It is not always easy to find a good range of color for the winter window box and in the United Kingdom, the early spring of 2016 was particularly inclement. It was good to see that the pansies purchased from Clifton Nurseries, a wonderful garden centre in Maida Vale, London, survived very well through everything the weather threw at them and in mid May are still producing glorious colour.
Pansies Need Partial Shade
Pansies don’t like full sunshine. Although they can take a certain amount of sunlight the front yard where the window boxes are, can get extremely hot and in the late afternoon, they will wilt. It is therefore necessary to move them out of the very hot sun. If the plan is to plant them in a very sunny garden, it would be a good idea to choose an area which does not get the full blast of the sun all day.
During the Cold Weather, Pansies Need Less Water
During the very cold weeks of winter, the pansies really did not need much water. Checking them about once a week sufficed and even then they sometimes lasted as much as ten days. Gradually as the weather warmed this frequency of watering increased, and it has become necessary to check nearly every day.
The way to know if they need watering is to lift the window boxes. If the window boxes are light, the pansies need a drink, and if the boxes are still heavy they don’t. Pansies are very good at sipping up their water so are unlikely to stagnate in damp soil.
Deadhead Pansies Regularly
Be sure to deadhead the flowers and they will continue to flower for many weeks. The ones in the illustration are particularly large and most pansy flowers are about half their size, but regular removal of the dead flowerheads prevents them from going to seed and allows the production of new flowers.
Pansies can certainly provide a great deal of pleasure in the colour they give, they are very easy to grow and are great fun not only for the window box but also for the garden.