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The Blog: Let's Talk Gardening

Top Tips on Pansy Planting

If plants were people, pansies would be the Julia Roberts of flowers. A friend to everyone, loved by all, with a colorful personality and infectious laugh that brightens whatever room they’re in. (Ok- pansies may not actually laugh but follow me through this analogy anyway.) They are a hardy bunch (“Steel” Magnolias, if you will) and provide a gorgeous (“Pretty” Woman) show of color in the dull, colder months. Dare we say, we could “Eat, Pray, Love” pansies.

So now that you’re sold on the Oscar award-winning caliber of these blooming beauties, how, pray tell, do you give them the attention to detail they deserve? (And their agents insist on!) Good news- it’s easy pansy…er easy peasy!

Soil - The basic necessity of any plant, pansies love moist, organic-rich, well-drained soil. Bonus tip: "Dibble" McDonald Garden Center greenLeaf for extra nutrients. Dibbling is a planting method where you dig the hole, put fertilizer in, and then plant on top of fertilizer. Good news is the greenLeaf is right there for the roots (pansies HATE waiting) and there’s no worrying about the fertilizer on top of the soil washing away!

Spacing - Gimme some room here!! These stars need their personal space. Plant them about 7 to 12 inches apart.

Temperature - Be cool man. Pansies love cooler temps. In fact, if Hampton Roads graces us with a mild winter, there’s a good chance your pansies will make an encore performance the next year. Bonus tip: If you live in an especially cold climate or we have a especially chilly few weeks, add a layer of straw mulch when temperatures drop for better protection.

Sun Exposure - Every star loves the spotlight. Give pansies full sun or partial shade.

Pruning - Show business is rough. If there are faded or dying blooms, cut them loose and make room for the younger, more beautiful flowers. It's as easy as just walking by and picking off old blooms. Can actually be quite therapeutic.

Watering - “We would like a regular spritzing of Evian at a temperature no more or less than 67 degrees. With a sprig of mint.” Just kidding. Water regularly.

Like all plants, pansy varieties are not created equal. We encourage you to peruse our stores this weekend and pick a pack of pansies that fits you and your aesthetic just right.

Trend Alert! Here’s what’s popular this season: Coastal Sunrise, Pansiola Iris, Pansiola Quartz, Colosus Yellow Blotch & Halloween.