I wasn’t sure I’d get blooms this year. Oh, there were plenty of self-sown seedlings from the one plant I brought home after it flowered, but with biennials, those plants that bloom in their second year, I always lose track of where we are in their cycle. Fortunately, they never lose track, and if there’s space enough to grow just a few of the many seedlings this plant generates, odds are there should be one in bloom every spring. It is a blueblooded mediterranean, endemic to the island of Madeira off the north coast of Africa, famous for its namesake wine and the largest new year’s fireworks display in the world. A big shaggy brute of a plant with palmate leaves, full-grown size over 3 by 3 feet, that despite its lush, tropical appearance happily shrugs off conditions on the dry side. Hardy to 23 degrees. Typical flower color is mauve, but there is this white seed strain available. Loves having its photo taken. It has its own pinwheel charm when it explodes into bloom in spring, which seems to happen all at once as soon as the buds form, like a floral fireworks display. Like true biennials, my plants decline and die after bloom, though there are reports this geranium can behave like a perennial.