Geranium renardii
Common Name: cranesbill 
Type: Herbaceous perennial
Family: Geraniaceae
Native Range: Caucasus
Zone: 6 to 8
Height: 0.50 to 1.00 feet
Spread: 0.50 to 1.00 feet
Bloom Time: May to June
Bloom Description: White with violet veins
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Medium
Flower: Showy


Grow in average, dry to medium moisture, well-drained soil in full sun to part shade. Appreciates some afternoon shade in the St. Louis area. Tolerates full sun in cool summer areas. Tolerates drought once established. Also tolerates hot and humid summers. Plants of this species do not need to be cut back, sheared or otherwise trimmed after flowering. Removal of flowering stems is all that is usually necessary for maintaining attractive plant appearance. If foliage decline occurs in summer, individual leaves may be removed as they yellow. Plants may self seed in optimum conditions. Propagate by seed or division. Notwithstanding the foregoing, this species is not commonly planted in the U. S. and can be a challenge to grow well in the St. Louis climate.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Geranium renardii, commonly called Renard geranium, is a dense, clump-forming perennial that features scalloped, felted, wrinkled, long-petioled, gray-green basal leaves that grow in a mound to 8" tall and to 18" wide. Each leaf (to 5" wide) has 5-7 shallow-lobed segments. Leaves are attractive throughout the growing season, eventually turning yellow in fall. Five-petaled, pale mauve to white flowers (each to 1 1/2" wide) with deeply etched violet veins and notched petals bloom in late spring to early summer (May-June) in terminal umbel-like clusters atop dainty stems rising above the foliage to 10-12" tall. Some sporadic rebloom may occur throughout summer. This geranium is native to the Caucusus mountains where it is often found on rocky cliffs.

Genus name comes from the Greek word geranos meaning crane in reference to the fruit which purportedly resembles the head and beak of a crane.

Specific epithet honors Charles Claude (Karl Ivanovich) Renard (1809-1886) of Moscow.


No serious insect or disease problems. Leaf spot can be troublesome.


Border fronts, rock gardens, cottage gardens. Edging. Wood margins.