pel·​ar·​go·​ni·​um ˌpe-lär-ˈgō-nē-əm How to pronounce pelargonium (audio)
: any of a genus (Pelargonium) of southern African herbs of the geranium family with showy flowers of usually red, pink, or white distinguished by a spurred calyx and irregular corolla

called also geranium, storksbill

compare rose geranium

Examples of pelargonium in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web This gardening trend isn’t just about growing pelargoniums outdoors, however. Cori Sears, Better Homes & Gardens, 5 Aug. 2023 Flower seeds to start: Rhodochitins, fibrous begonias, dahlias lobelia (don’t cover seeds), snapdragons (don’t cover seed and grow cool), carnations, verbena, pelargoniums, hollyhocks. Jeff Lowenfels | Alaska Gardening and Growing, Anchorage Daily News, 9 Mar. 2023 The sale includes Bakers Acres inventory of bromeliads, tillandsias and gasteria as well as pots, and board members will be selling vegetable starts, succulents, plumeria, pelargoniums and other varieties. Los Angeles Times, 28 Feb. 2023 Take cuttings from pelargoniums to multiply plants. Jeff Lowenfels, Anchorage Daily News, 2 Apr. 2020 Pelargonium A close cousin to the geranium, pelargonium is undoubtedly more elegant and just as easy to grow. Molly Marquand, Good Housekeeping, 14 Dec. 2017 Just as with pelargonium, snip off a three inch piece at a node, place in water for 2-3 weeks, and presto! Molly Marquand, Good Housekeeping, 14 Dec. 2017 Geraniums and pelargoniums are easy choices to propagate via this method. Sunset, 22 Jan. 2018 Seeds to start: Lobelia (20 days to germinate, seeds need light), snapdragons (10 days, seeds need light, cool), carnation (20), verbena (20), pelargonium, salvia and pansies. Jeff Lowenfels, Anchorage Daily News, 15 Mar. 2018 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'pelargonium.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


New Latin, from Greek pelargos stork (akin to Greek pelios livid, polios gray) + New Latin -nium (as in Geranium) — more at fallow

First Known Use

1813, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of pelargonium was in 1813

Dictionary Entries Near pelargonium

Cite this Entry

“Pelargonium.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


pel·​ar·​go·​ni·​um ˌpe-lär-ˈgō-nē-əm How to pronounce pelargonium (audio)
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