DENVER — Are you ready to add some much-needed color to your garden?
Pansies are the perfect cool-weather flower and are surprisingly hearty in cold weather. Pansies don’t tolerate heat. They get straggly and leggy so don’t wait until summer to plant them, get started now.
I learned from Rob that planting pansies in patio pots with cool season greens (lettuce, kale, spinach) is not only attractive, but it’s an easy way to have an edible garden at your fingertips. Pansies are one of several edible garden flowers. They have a mild minty flavor. Add them to your salad for a little pizazz!
A new pansy variety called Cool Wave is from the same makers of Wave petunias. This new pansy variety is perfect for hanging baskets as it cascades over the edge of the pot and has tons of blooms.
Pansies symbolize “thinking” or “thoughts.” The word “pansy” comes from French pensée, meaning “thought." What a lovely gift for someone you might be thinking about.
Another cool season flower that I love to plant are snapdragons. These remind me of my grandmother because she taught me how to make a snapdragon talk.
I don’t remove all of the faded flowers from my snapdragons so that their seeds will find their way into my garden, returning every year.
Snapdragons symbolize “strength” and “grace.” two words that sum up my grandmother perfectly.
Anytime you transplant plants that you’ve brought home from a warm, protected greenhouse make sure to acclimate or harden off the plants by gradually exposing them to outdoor conditions for several days. Bring them out during the day and bring them in or protect them at night…especially at a hard frost or heavy snow.
Don’t forget to fertilize your plants once a week. I start with a good grow fertilizer higher in nitrogen to promote strong green growth, and then switch to a bloom fertilizer higher in phosphorus to get the flowers blooming. Water regularly so they don’t dry out and remove the faded flowers to encourage the plant to produce more blooms.
Happy Spring and happy planting (well, between snowstorms anyway).
More Proctor's Garden:
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