It’s time for Pan­sies

The Standard Journal - - LIFESTYLE - By Ricky Ens­ley Polk County Ex­ten­sion Co­or­di­na­tor

Pan­sies grow well in Novem­ber in North­west Ge­or­gia due to our tem­per­a­tures. The ideal tem­per­a­ture range for pan­sies is 40 de­gree Fahren­heit night to 60 de­gree Fahren­heit day.

In Polk County, most pan­sies are planted in the fall of the year and may even pro­duce a few blooms in late fall and win­ter. Come spring they are well es­tab­lished. Most va­ri­eties are in­tol­er­ant of hot dry weather.

Pan­sies be­long to the vi­o­let fam­ily. Most pan­sies are hy­brids. These hy­brids are larger flow­ered, more vig­or­ous, ear­lier flow­er­ing, and more heat tol­er­ant than most non-hy­brids. Pan­sies are avail­able in al­most all col­ors. Flower sizes range from 1 to 4 inches.

Pan­sies are an ex­cel­lent choice for low borders and for bed­ding. They mix well with spring flow­er­ing bulbs. They also work well in planters and win­dow boxes. They grow best in full sun or light shade.

Too much shade will re­duce flow­er­ing and may re­sult in spindly plants. For bed­ding pur­poses, plants should be spaced about 6 inches apart.

A fer­tile soil with drainage is es­sen­tial for op­ti­mal growth. A split ap­pli­ca­tion of fer­til­izer is usu­ally rec­om­mended- in the fall at plant­ing and again in spring around March. Avoid high ni­tro­gen fer­til­iz­ers be­cause they tend to pro­duce “soft” plants.

Good gar­den­ing!

Ricky Ens­ley

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