Pansies are a close relative of the ever-popular Viola. Like their cousin they have never been out of favour with the home gardener. Grown for their versatility these compact growing annuals come in a huge range of colours. There are also a variety of flower styles, for example: - Most come with black blotches in the centre of the flower to resemble a happy face. You can also get bi-colour flowers (two colours on one flower), striped & frilly varieties.

Pansies flower from late autumn to spring. The size of the flower is varied with some producing flowers up to 10cm across. Growing to a height of approximately 20cm, Pansies are ideal for plant in mass plantings along the edge of a garden.
Choose a position situated in the full sun. Pansies will grow in semi shade but for best results and an abundance of flower they prefer a sunny spot. The soil should be prepared with Searles® Real Compost or 5 IN 1® Organic Plant Food. To give them an extra kick, add a couple of handfuls of Kickalong® Organic - Complete Garden. Pansies love good drainage so a raised bed is ideal.

Pansies look wonderful when grown in pots or hanging baskets. When planting them use a premium potting mix. For outstanding results in both outdoor pots and hanging baskets, use Searles Peat 80 Plus® Potting Mix.
Pansies are easily grown from seed. There are some very good varieties in the Searles® seed range; Colour Festival, Jumbo Giants, Regal Ruffles and Ullswater Blues. Sow seed in Autumn & Winter, using Searles® Seed Raising Mix. Keep the mix moist and once the seedlings are at the stage of having 2 - 3 leaves transplant them into the garden or pot them into small pots to grow on to a more advanced plant before planting out.

Pansies are also available in seedling form (punnets). You can buy old fashion favourites like Regal Ruffles, Swiss Giants & Can Can, or some new varieties such as Moonfaces, Torch, Tiger Silk, Priscilla and many more. Extensive breeding means new colours and larger flowers are released each year.

Plant the seedlings about 15 - 20cm apart and water them in with SeaMax® Fish & Kelp.
A good deep drink twice a week will be sufficient for most gardens Pots and Hanging Baskets may require more watering, especially during flowering.
Once plants are established, to promote more abundant flowering, apply Searles® Liquid Potash every 1-2 weeks. Searles® Liquid Potash contains both Potassium and Phosphorus and will promote more flowers, deeper colours and longer lasting flowers. A must for a stunning Pansy display.
Pansies normally don't get many pests, but poor drainage & over watering can cause root rot & loss of plants. The size of your pansy blooms can depend on the climate. For example the colder the temperature the larger the flowers.

Remove spent flowers to encourage more blooms and once plants become long & lanky dig them out to make space for new season flowers.

With their bright happy faces, that look up at you from the garden, and a rainbow of colours Pansies will certainly suit any situation and cheer up your garden.

Happy Gardening with Searles from the Searle family.

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