wild geranium

Geranium maculatum (wild geranium) is a great plant that never disappoints with its wonderful pinkish-purple flowers.

Native to woodland in eastern North America. The petals are pale purplish-pink and obovate with rounded tips. They have fine veins radiating across their surfaces that function as nectar guides. The blooming period occurs during the late spring, lasting about 1 month. It has deeply cut, palmately 5-lobed dark green leaves.

Flowers give away to distinctive, beak seed capsules which gives rise to the common name of cranesbill. Each seed is packed into a pod and the pods are attached to a structure that resembles a crane’s bill. When the bill dries, it catapults the seeds away from the parent plant. The plant has been used in herbal medicine by the Masquakie Indians who brewed a root tea for headaches and for painful nerves, and for treating hemorrhoids.

Geranium maculatum (wild geranium) is the showiest of the native geraniums in Illinois with flowers at least 1″ across.

Botanical Name Geranium maculatum
Common Name wild geranium
Family Geraniaceae
USDA Zone 3 thru 8
Light Requirement Full Sun to Part Shade
Season(s) of interest spring
Height and Spread 1.5-2ft x 1-1.5ft (45-60cm x 30-45cm)
Flower Color Pale Pink to Lilac
Attracts Wildlife Provides Food for Birds, Hosts Caterpillars of Butterflies/Moths, Attracts Pollinators, Rarely Browsed by Mammalian Herbivores
Additional Information Native to Chicago Region.
Location in Lurie Garden Southwest Dark Plate


Average Flowering Time