How to Plant Pansies in the Garden
Investing in flowers with a short life is a real drag, but you won’t have that problem with pansies. Better Homes & Gardens notes that these flowers are planted in September and can frequently bloom as late as April or May. In fact, pansies that endure a harsh winter often bloom even more robustly in the spring.
Pansies are technically perennials, but many gardeners treat them as annuals or biennials and choose to plant new ones every year.
Pansies come in a variety of colors, which gives gardeners flexibility. You can choose to select one color of pansy or introduce a mix of colors. They look phenomenal when used as a boarder or in large groupings. Consider planting alternate colors or plant them in a decorative arrangement.
- Select a location with well-draining soil that will receive partial to full sun in the spring and fall.
- Dig holes about the same depth as the container the pansies are coming from, spaced about 6 to 10 inches apart (depending upon the size of the pansies). Pansies placed closer together will have a fuller look, whereas pansies spaced farther apart will have better air circulation and will likely be healthier.
- Pop the pansies out of the container gently, and rough up the roots around the edges. Some experts suggest ripping off the bottom skin-like layer of roots to encourage root growth.
- Place the pansy level with the soil. Avoid burying stems or crowns, as pansies are susceptible to rot.
- Water the soil around the pansy thoroughly, but avoid getting the bloom wet.
Deadhead blooms as they die off to encourage continuous blooming
- Remove pansies from the soil during the summer months, as they tend to sprawl out and look unhealthy from too much warmth.
- Monitor soil moisture levels, particularly as snow and ice begin to melt around the blooms. Pansies need well-draining soil in order to thrive.
- When purchasing pansies by the case, look for healthy, compact blooms. Avoid pansies that seem to have outgrown their pack, as they likely won’t be very hardy. Also avoid yellowing leaves, but don’t despair if the blooms aren’t bright yet. They will develop more color with growth.
- Mulch pansies during the winter to help keep soil temps higher and to aid with drainage.
- Fertilize them about every 4 weeks in the spring to encourage vigorous blooms.
Monitor the area around your pansies for pests such as slugs. Remove them by hand if the critters become bothersome.