Pansies get a bum rap.
Sure, they’re pretty and delicate-looking but they’re also one of the toughest little flowers. They can stand up to high winds, torrential rain storms, and temperatures that dip near the freezing point. And that’s why if you can’t wait another month for the weather to warm up in the Boston area your best bet is to plant pansies.
Lowe’s and Home Depot already have geraniums and petunias in stock but I wouldn’t risk buying them until the last week in May.
The RootsLiving gardeners purchased a bunch of pansies this week and planted them in window boxes and a few decorative urns. They’ll provide spring color until next month when our attention will turn to warm summer winds.
Tips on Container Planting For Novice Gardeners
Buy a bag of potting soil and fill up the container. Do not pack the dirt down.
Stick your fingers in the dirt and dig a small hole as deep as the dirt/root ball you’ll be putting in it. Now, pinch the dirt up at the bottom of the hole to create a small hill inside the hole.
Tap and/or pinch the bottom of the throw-away plastic container that came with your plant. Gently tip the container over to release the plant.
Split the rootball in half gently with your fingers and place each half of the rootball over the small hill you made inside the hole. (The reason you do this is because the roots of the plant have been squished in a small container and the plant’s survival depends on it being able to extend its roots into the new container.)
Fill in the hole, making sure that where the stem of the plant meets the soil is just a little higher than the surrounding soil.