The first zonal pelargoniums with starry flowers and jaggedly divided foliage, often called stellar geraniums, were introduced in the nineteenth century. All were raised from cuttings and they enjoyed occasional flurries of enthusiasm until the1980s when ‘Voodoo’, in scarlet with well-zoned foliage, and ‘Startel’, in a range of colours, appeared as seed raised types. There was even one with a semi-trailing habit.
The problem with these was that they were rather leggy and not sufficiently prolific so more recently attention turned again to cuttings raised plants, in particular the Fireworks Series from Germany. But now, this season sees a new series of seed-raised stellar geraniums introduced: the Quantum Series.
Developed in Norfolk by Floranova, Britain’s leading breeder of new seed-raised summer flowers, these compact plants feature sharply dissected foliage boldly marked with a dark zone.
Far more prolific than earlier types, the broad heads are packed with starry flowers held above the foliage but without the long spindly stems of the varieties of thirty years ago. Also, each individual floret retains its petals for longer than usual before shattering so creating an extended display.
The plants are ideal in containers and because they’re even more tolerant of high temperatures than other geraniums they’re ideal on a hot and sunny patio where other plants will scorch.
There are three colours in the mixture: red, salmon and light pink. ‘Quantum Red’ is a rich dark scarlet, and is also available separately; ‘Quantum Light Pink’ is pale rose pink with darker veins; ‘Quantum Salmon’ is salmon pink with a white tip to each petal.
Seed of Pelargonium (Geranium) ‘Quantum Mixed’ is available from Mr Fothergill's, Nicky’s Nursery and also Plants of Distinction.
Seed of Pelargonium (Geranium) ‘Quantum Red’ is available from Thompson & Morgan.
Young plants of Pelargonium (Geranium) ‘Quantum Mixed’ are available from Suttons.
Please note the contents of this blog reflect the views of its author, which are not necessarily those of the RHS.