The common Zonal Geranium (Pelargonium x hortorum) is a popular garden plant throughout the world. Pelargonium xhortorum is a hybrid between Pelargonium zonale and Pelargonium inquinans. Cultivars with very double flowers and no anthers are called Rosebud Pelargoniums since the flowers never open completely and therefore resemble a rosebud. It is a very vigorous semi-woody perennial plant which grows in USDA zones 9-11. The Zonal Geranium can reach 2-3ft in height and its growth habit is mounded and spreading. It has leathery, pointed and toothed green leaves that are typically marked with a band of yellow, blotch or circle. The bright and colorful flowers come in shades of pink, white, red and orange and can be single or double-petalled. Deadheading will encourage the Zonal Geranium to produce more flowers.
Pelargonium x hortorum is fairly undemanding and easy to grow in low-maintenance gardens. It prefers dappled or full sun and regular, deep watering. The plant should be fertilized every few weeks during the growing season with a balanced liquid fertilizer, and slightly less frequently in cooler months. It can be propagated by stem cuttings taken in spring and summer, but this is not essential.
In cooler regions the Zonal Geranium can be grown in a pot. It should be planted in a well-draining potting soil in a container with good drainage. Water the pot regularly and make sure to keep it in a sheltered spot that won't get too cold. The plant can be brought indoors during winter and placed in a bright spot with indirect sunlight. Make sure to stop fertilizing about six weeks before winter and cut it back to encourage compact growth and plentiful flowers.