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Winter Color

(October 2008)

QuestionWhen is the proper time to plant pansies? Do they need full sun? What type of soil?  I want to plant pansies in front of the signs at town hall, the police station and the entrance to a recreation park. All locations are in full sun. Would pansies be a good choice or is there another flower to consider? I would like flowers all winter and then change them out in the springtime with red begonias and Joseph coats.


AnswerPansies are an excellent choice for fall through spring color.  They do well in full sun to partial shade and like a well amended and well drained soil.  October through November is the ideal time to plant them. There are other options for fall color as well, including: violas, dianthus, snapdragons (central Arkansas south), dusty miller, flowering kale and cabbage, Bright Lights Swiss Chard, and curly mustard.  In many seasons, we find the violas outperform the pansies, since they tolerate more fluctuations in temperatures than the pansies do.  Fertilize periodically throughout the winter when we get warmer temperatures.

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