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Friday, March 26, 2010

Pansies or Violas?

Pansies?

Or Violas?

I am in favor of both pansies and violas for early spring color in containers and window boxes, or even just planted in the ground. I purchased and planted my pansies and violas on March 15th and already they are filling out the containers they are in and will provide a grand display in time for Easter weekend.

But I am having a difficult time convincing people in "real life" that it is worth the effort to plant pansies and violas now. They all seem to be programmed to start gardening around Mother's Day weekend in mid-May, when it is too late for these cool weather loving spring flowers. 

I'm as persistent as an evangelist trying to convince them to plant pansies and violas in the spring.

They are also surprised that so far this spring, I have not only planted pansies and violas, but have also sowed seeds for peas, sweet peas, lettuce and spinach. And I've weeded some, too.

And tomorrow, "God willing and the creek don't rise", I'll be mowing the lawn for the first time this season.

It's spring! Let's get out into the garden!

And oh, yeah, the original reason for this post... do you prefer pansies? Or violas? Or both?  Choose!

21 comments:

Dee @ Red Dirt Ramblings said...

I like pansies, but I love the new violas. I have them stuck everywhere. Yes, everyone get into the garden. Spring has sprung.~~Dee

Carrie said...

We plant pansies in the fall, let them overwinter, and then they're bright and pretty in the spring. Helps to carry us through til the warm weather comes...

Cyndy said...

Oh so jealous of your pansies and violas - still not out in central Connecticut, as far as I can tell. What else is there for a northern window box until Memorial Day?

Rose said...

Frankly, I don't have a preference--anything colorful this time of year is welcome!

Amy said...

I agree with Rose - bring on the color. Pansies are the longest blooming annual in our neck of the woods. We plant in October and enjoy through May.

Your photos are really pretty!

Mary Ellen said...

I am zone 3 - went to NM zone 8-9 (I think) and they the stores had pansies and violas on clearance because they are getting to warm there already! I brought them back to CO but we keep getting snow and haven't planted yet. Can I plant them when it is still freezing here and there?

bee blessed
mary

NellJean said...

Violas are my choice here in zone
8b. They last longer into warm weather and tolerate the cold better through the winter. I planted some November 20 and more February 3. They were fine thought the freezes of February with a little pine straw mulch. When the sun gets hot in May, they're toast and will be replaced by annuals like marigolds and Madagascar periwinkles.

lotusleaf said...

I like both.

Robin's Nesting Place said...

Well, considering that I bought violas over the pansies a few days ago, I guess my clear choice is violas.

Our grass needs mowing too. Looking forward to the warm weather again; it was too COLD today!

Gail said...

I prefer violas...I love their small cutie pie faces. gail

Leslie said...

I like them both...but as winter flowers. We plant them as it cools in fall. I like the bright colors from either to light up the gray Central CA winters.

Darla said...

I love them both too. We plant ours in November here...

Lisa at Greenbow said...

I usually plant more pansies than violas. This year I got violas becasue the centers had them first. I will get a few pansises for my windowbox because they stick up higher and I can see them better. I like them both. I thought of you this week when my DB mowed for the first time. I think this is the earliest he has ever mowed. It didn't need much more than a knocking down of the onions. Those are pesky weeds.

heather @ what's blooming this week said...

It's pansies for me every year. Right now we have a planter on the patio table, the window box and some in an urn under a hydrangea. Think I'm the only one on the street with some colour right now.

helen Yoest @ Gardening With Confidence™ said...

I like both, but tend to plant more pansies. H.

Kara said...

I love the viola Johnny-Jump-Up. They are very hardy and as soon as the snow melts, I know there will be some ready to open blooms. They are tough as old boots. I let them self seed wherever they want to go and never have to bother starting new seeds.
Larger Pansies are much weaker in my location and do not always return after winter.

Ivynettle said...

I've never liked pansies much - I generally don't like large flowers, and then I've just seen far too many of them.
Violas, on the other hand - well, I've seen quite a lot of them after 3.5 years of working in nurseries, but I still like their cute little flowers so much more. And they never look as untidy as pansies do if they've been rained on or anything.

Karen S said...

Violas are my favorite, but I'll take Pansies as well. The violas have been blooming for a couple of weeks already. In fact, this am I said I needed to go pick some Pansies up or the season will be over for us.

Msrobin said...

Hmmm, I think I'll choose pansies, although truthfully I don't see a big difference between the two! I guess pansies are a bit larger, and therefore, more noticeable. For years I never planted anything till mid May, now I know better. My pansies are already in the ground, and my cool season crops will go in Tuesday when I have the day off. Now the pansies didn't like their snow bonnets yesterday, but they'll perk up again!

jodi (bloomingwriter) said...

Both. Hands down. I love the huge variety of colours and forms in the pansies, but also the profusion and tendency to run of the violas.

Syracuse EcoHouse said...

I had just finished reading your post and thinking about how I had not seen seen a viola in years....when that afternoon I noticed that my yard at the home I rent is sprinkled with a hundred or so blooming viola. So for now, they are my favorite because they were such a lovely surprise.

Thanks for posting and adding to my excitement!