Re: [IGS] Geranium Johnson's Blue

Pat & Alex wrote:
> Mimy Sluiter wrote:
> > Geranium "Johnson's Blue", clear lavendelblue, 70 cm, G. himalayense x
> > G.pratense, Sun/semi-shade, june-august [...]
> Thanks Mimy,
> I'm new to the list, love geraniums but there seem to be so few
> varieties available here. This one sounds perfect for a semi-shady spot
> that is always difficult to fill.
> Pat

Hi Pat,
There are many hardy Geraniums available world wide. The UK always has
played a big part in it, both scientifically (the famous book by Peter
Yeo called Hardy Geraniums is a must to have!) and also horticulturally
with many nurseries and private hybridisers developing new varieties
(seems they started a lot of the pet animal breeding and plant
breeding). But also on the continent of Europe, in Australia and in
America there are faithful growers. If you have Yeo's book you can see
what abundance and variation of species and primary hybrids there are
Re Geraniums a few remarks:
The species are listed as:
Geranium aaaaaaaa
or G. aaaaaaaa
where aaaaaaaaa is the species name without a capital at the beginning.
example: G. tuberosum

Sometimes there are naturally found subspecies (ssp. or subsp., fairly
different but still intermateable with the species), variations (var.,
less different, a few things vary) or forms (f., just a different detail
like flower color or leaf form). So they are listed as:
G. aaaaaaaa ssp. bbbbbbbb
G. aaaaaaaa var. cccccccc
G. aaaaaaaa ssp. bbbbbbbb f. dddddddd
example: G. franchetti var. wilsonii

Then there are several forms of a species that either are found in a
specific region and differ from the "normal" species somewhat or are
selections made from a stock owned by a nursery or private enthousiast.
These are noted as:
G. aaaaaaaa "Eeeeeeee"
The "Eeeeeeee" is then the name given to either honor the place of
finding or the selector or whatever the selector likes to name it after.
A real example of a "foundingplace"-name is:
G. macrorrhizum "Pindus", magentapurper flower, 20 cm, collected in the
wild by Bill Baker near the Mount Pindus in Greece
A real example of a "breeder's selection"-name is:
Geranium sylvaticum "Nikita", medium blue, small white eye, 90 cm, named
by Heronswood Nurseries USA after their beloved Cockerspaniel who died
in 1994.

Then there are several "natural hybrids" - some sterile, some fertile
that occur by chance in nature or by chance when two plants meet in a
garden. These are always noted as
G. x eeeeeeee - the x between the G. and the plant's name denotes it is
a hybrid (the "mules" or "ligers" of the plant world!)
example: G. x oxonianum

And lastly there are the real "Cultivars" - wilfully crossed species and
primary hybrids by enthousiast nursery owners or private Geranium
enthousiasts. They are always written like:
G. "Ffffffff". They often ahve the largest appeal to garden ethousiasts
as they have been especially developed and crossed to have to most
attractive flowers and foliage.
So - you now know that G. "Johnson's Blue" belongs to that last
category. I hope you will be able to find it near you!
Bye from Holland,
Mimy Sluiter (with a day off from work and enjoying it much!)

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