Crazy for the Pansy

Visiting our Garden Center right now is like stepping into a rainbow. We have gone crazy for the pansy flowers! We have them in every color, with some even showing off multi colors!

Pansies are jewels of a cool-season flowerbed. Their constant perky blooms throughout the winter into Spring (and sometimes early summer) seem to sparkle. They definitely turn heads, giving them, and your house, deserving attention.  Plant them in containers, as a border, or in your garden beds. Plant a single color in mass or plant a variety of colors- whatever way you choose to plant, you will dig them!

Violas are pansies “younger sister.” These are just like pansies, but with a smaller flower. Violas pair well into container gardens as “fillers” mixed in with other cool season and evergreen favorites.

Pansies and Violas enjoy the cooler weather the fall through winter offer us. You may be wondering how they handle our warmer “winter” days. As long as the nighttime temperature stays in the 60s or below, they will handle those wild warm Louisiana winter days just fine. They can take the higher day temps if they have a cool off break at night. 

Planted while we have higher temperatures, we would recommend you planting them in the partial sun/shade. They can handle good morning sun, but tend to get “leggy” if given too much sun and the hotter afternoon sun. If they are planted when it’s consistently cold/chilly outside, the full all day sun will be fine for them.

A common question we get asked often is if pansies/violas need to be covered in a freeze event. Nope. They’ll survive a frost, bouncing back from even single digit temperatures. If the blooms wither in the cold, the plants will likely stay alive to bloom again.

Hi-Yield’s Blood Meal is a great addition to add to your pansy planting! This slow-release granule provides high amounts of nitrogen to the soil to encourage foliage to green up and last longer. This product also works great for roses, caladiums, trees, shrubs, and any other plant you want the foliage to green up. Remove faded/dead flowers to encourage the plants to produce more blooms and to prolong the blooming season.

Remember to water pansies regularly. One of the most common reasons pansies fail is because they are not watered enough, so if your pansies are not doing well, try watering them more. A general rule of thumb is to stick your finger in the soil. If your finger comes back moist, hold off watering. If the soil is dry, time to water! All plants benefit from a good soaking as opposed to light surface watering.

Did you know that pansies are one of several edible garden flowers? They have a mild minty flavor and make for a lovely edible flourish on a salad or dessert. This makes growing them even more fun, especially in time for the holiday parties!