Landscape and Garden Plant Finder
John Elsley Cranesbill
Geranium sanguineum 'John Elsley'
John Elsley Cranesbill flowers
(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)
Height: 3 inches
Spacing: 10 inches
Hardiness Zone: 3
Other Names: Bloody Cranesbill
Perfect as a groundcover, this low spreader has small, deeply lobed leaves that are tinged with red in cooler weather; bathed in beautiful large, purple-red saucer-shaped blooms; deadhead spent flowers for reblooming later in the season
John Elsley Cranesbill has masses of beautiful violet flowers with purple stripes at the ends of the stems from late spring to late summer, which are most effective when planted in groupings. Its small deeply cut lobed palmate leaves are dark green in colour. As an added bonus, the foliage turns a gorgeous dark red in the fall. The fruit is not ornamentally significant.
John Elsley Cranesbill is a dense herbaceous perennial with a ground-hugging habit of growth. It brings an extremely fine and delicate texture to the garden composition and should be used to full effect.
This is a relatively low maintenance plant, and should only be pruned after flowering to avoid removing any of the current season's flowers. Deer don't particularly care for this plant and will usually leave it alone in favor of tastier treats. It has no significant negative characteristics.
John Elsley Cranesbill is recommended for the following landscape applications;
- Mass Planting
- Rock/Alpine Gardens
- General Garden Use
- Container Planting
Planting & Growing
John Elsley Cranesbill will grow to be only 3 inches tall at maturity, with a spread of 12 inches. When grown in masses or used as a bedding plant, individual plants should be spaced approximately 10 inches apart. Its foliage tends to remain low and dense right to the ground. It grows at a medium rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for approximately 10 years.
This plant does best in full sun to partial shade. It is very adaptable to both dry and moist locations, and should do just fine under typical garden conditions. It is not particular as to soil type or pH. It is somewhat tolerant of urban pollution. This is a selected variety of a species not originally from North America. It can be propagated by division; however, as a cultivated variety, be aware that it may be subject to certain restrictions or prohibitions on propagation.
John Elsley Cranesbill is a fine choice for the garden, but it is also a good selection for planting in outdoor pots and containers. Because of its spreading habit of growth, it is ideally suited for use as a 'spiller' in the 'spiller-thriller-filler' container combination; plant it near the edges where it can spill gracefully over the pot. Note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden. Be aware that in our climate, most plants cannot be expected to survive the winter if left in containers outdoors, and this plant is no exception. Contact our store for more information on how to protect it over the winter months.