Low Maintenance Plant: Pansies

Add some color and cheer to an early spring garden with care-free pansies.

- Choose from pre-planted, pansy bowls that are ready to set on your front steps, deck or patio. Or, select a few 4-inch potted pansies to add to your spring containers or more for garden beds. You’ll find cheerful pansies in many solid colors and bi-colors... including purple ones that are fragrant.

- Increase your enjoyment by planting a few pansies where you can watch butterflies stop by for a visit. Or, try adding a few of these edible flowers* to a green salad... or freeze a few blooms in ice cube trays. Use these flower-filled ice cubes to glasses of sparkling water or lemonade as a decorative touch for spring.
*Look for organically grown pansies, if you plan on eating the flowers.

- Get your pansies off to a good start by planting them at the same level that they were growing in their individual containers. Space plants about six inches apart in the garden. Give trailing types like Cool Wave a bit more room... approximately 12 inches between plants. You can also use trailing varieties in hanging basket or as spillers that fall gently over the edge of a container.

- Create instant results in your container gardens by spacing pansy plants close together. Or, give them a bit more room and watch them grow and fill in over several weeks. Consider mixing things up a bit by adding leafy vegetables such as Swiss Chard, kale, colorful leaf lettuce or ornamental mustard greens. They will combine nicely with pansies and make an attractive and edible spring container.

- Relax and enjoy these carefree flowers. Pansies need minimal deadheading to keep blooming throughout the spring. As temperatures rise, remove faded flowers to extend the bloom and prune back leggy stems to keep plants looking their best. Once warmer summer weather arrives, replace these cool weather beauties with summer loving annuals.

 

At a Glance
Name: Pansy (Viola x wittrockiana)
Bloom: April until it succumbs to summer heat
Size: 6 to 8 inches tall
Space: 6 inches apart – trailing varieties 12 inches apart
Light: Full sun to part shade
Water: Water often enough to keep the soil slightly moist
Soil: Well-drained
Temperature: Cool season, frost tolerant

 

Written by, gardening expert, Melinda Myers.  Each month Melinda will feature a low maintenance plant perfect for beginning and experienced gardeners looking for attractive easy care plants.  Melinda Myers is a nationally recognized gardening expert with more than 30 years of horticulture experience.  She is a wealth of knowledge and we are pleased to share Melinda’s Low Maintenance Plant of the Month with you!