July 26, 2011 - 23:00

Ecke Ranch continues to expand its Elegance line of regal geraniums with Crystal Rose and Red Velvet. These varieties offer early spring color and consistently deliver uniform habit and flower response timing. These geraniums produce full flowers in March through early summer, and are ideal for Easter and Mother’s Day.

When purchasing bud-initiated plants, growers should transplant into a well-drained bark or peat-lite mix and water thoroughly. Regals are sensitive to EC levels above 1.2, so feeding at 175 to 200 ppm with a balanced fertilizer is ideal.

Maintain a maximum 56° F night temperature and keep day temperatures in the 60s. Extended day length must be provided until April 1 in order to provide uniform flower development. Use incandescent lighting to provide 18 hours of continuous day length.

Once plants have become established in their final containers, moisture and humidity levels should be kept in the moderate range. Regals flower best when given slight moisture stress starting three to four weeks after transplant. If kept too wet, in a high humidity environment, they may revert to vegetative growth and abort initiated buds.

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Encinitas, CA