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The state of Georgia offers plant hardiness zones 6, 7, and 8. Here around Woodstock and Canton, GA we are in hardiness zones 7a and 7b. These zones and our winter weather are the perfect conditions for planting and enjoying pansies in our winter landscape. Autumn Hill Nursery has tips for you on the best way and time to plant your pansies so that they will survive the winter temperatures and bounce back with vigor next spring when the warm weather returns.

Preparing Beds for PansiesThe Time to Plant

Right now is the best time to plant pansies in Woodstock and Canton, Georgia landscapes. Pansies require soil temperatures between 45 to 65 degrees F for best growth and if planted when the soil temperatures go below 45 degrees F, they will grow poorly developing pale green leaves and few flowers. On the other hand, pansies planted too early in warmer temperatures will have yellowing leaves, few flowers, and they will grow to be ‘leggy’ – only producing new leaves and flowers at the ends of their stems leaving the susceptible to frost and insect damage.  When you’re ready to plant, make sure that you select pansies that are healthy and free of insects and diseases. Choosing plants in larger pots will mean that they will have a larger, more developed root system that will increase their chance of success.

Getting Your Bed Ready for Planting

Pansies prefer not to have ‘wet feet’ and will thrive in well drained soil. To assist in drainage, plant pansies in raised beds – about 6 to 10 inches above the existing grade. Add organic materials or soil amendment to the soil to improve its water and nutrient holding ability. As far as fertilizing your new pansies, avoid using slow release nitrogen fertilizers. Instead, use a water soluble fertilizer such as 15-2-20 to help get the plants off to a good start. Pansies can be planted at 6, 8, or 10 in intervals. While a 6-inch spacing will make your flower bed appear fuller, the plants could grow to be crowded and will be more likely to be attacked by insect or disease. Spacing 10 inches apart will allow ample air flow and will require fewer plants to fill up your beds.

You’re ready to plant! All you have to do is stop by either of our nurseries and pick up your favorite variety of pansies. We carry many of the traditional types of pansies, as well as the newer, cool wave variety that spreads up to two feet wide! They look great in containers too. Just make sure that your last step of the planting process includes lots of water for your newly installed annual color.

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