Has Finally Arrived!
Now that temperatures have dropped into the 70s it's time to begin planting this favorite winter bloom.
To get started here, are
five tips for success with pansies and violas :
Plant as soon as possible. Planting while it's still relatively warm allows several weeks for growth before daytime temps drop below 50 degrees, and growth rate slows dramatically. Also, plant before Thanksgiving and you'll be able to choose from the best selection.
Fertilize when planting
. We recommend
fertilome Start-n-Grow, a slow-release fertilizer that only needs to be applied every 3 or 4 months and is effective even when soil temps drop below 70 degrees.
Provide loose, well-drained soil. "Wet feet" are more common in wet winters since cold air slows evaporation, so make sure containers have drainage holes. Add soil conditioner to flowerbeds to break up clay before planting.
Got shade? Give violas a try. Both pansies and violas thrive in partial to full sun (3 or more hours each day). However, if you have a shadier area that receives only 1 to 3 hours of sun each day then opt for violas.
Pinch off spent blooms. While pansies and violas will bloom whether 'deadheaded' or not, removing faded flowers has a positive effect. Flowers that aren't removed will begin to form seeds, and this saps energy that the plant could use to produce more flower buds.