How early to plant pansies?

tjsangel(z5 OH)March 30, 2008

Hi,

I'm ready to get the flowers going! I have the spring itch. I'd like to pot up some pansies for my windowsill. Is it too early for these? I know they like cool weather. I'd bring them in my heated garage if we have a severe frost. Thank you!

Jen

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boxcar_grower(5)

Sounds like a plan. Pansies will do fine this time of year. All the local flower greenhouses have pansies all over the place for sale. I would be careful though. They are tough but will get bit if it gets much below 25. Just last night here in western Massachusetts it was 18. So being able to move them inside if a freeze is predicted is a good idea.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2008 at 9:06PM
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jab38

can i plant panies out side at the end of march beging of april

    Bookmark   March 31, 2008 at 6:36AM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

i would NOT take them into the HEATED garage ....

the issue for you raring to go types.. is HARDENING OFF ...

if you buy from a local source.. who grew them and tempered them to your region ... they should be able to go outside when sold ...

if you are buying from bigboxstore.. and they were shipped in from say.. z8 ... and you throw them outside ... they will go into shock and die ...

for most stock ... except the tenderest ... the issue of frost/freeze is actual ice crystal formation on tender leaves .. cell walls collapse.. and the leaf is damaged beyond repair ...

just putting them inside an unheated structure.. cold.. but avoiding the ice ... is usually good enough ... keeping them in sllooowww motion is the trick

putting them in a heated garage.. will only make them grow more tissue that can be damaged ... putting them in fast forward is bad ...

when i used to grow pansys .... many wintered over ... many reseeded freely .. and many died.. it all depends on the seed source.. and the parent plants zone ...

make sense???

ken

    Bookmark   March 31, 2008 at 8:45AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Pansies can take temperature much colder than freezing, as long as they haven't been grown under tropical conditions. They are planted all over the place in my location in the fall, and though the flowers may get burned when it gets into the low teens, the foliage doesn't suffer much at all. And BOY, do they every begin to grow quickly once it starts to get warmish!

I've had fun with my front porch container of pansies over the winter, watching them bloom their heads off after every heavy freeze (below 20).

I'd plant them in your window boxes, but rather than bring them inside to the heat in the event of a very severe cold snap, I think that I would cover them instead.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2008 at 11:28AM
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tjsangel(z5 OH)

Thanks everyone, you really know your stuff! I have decided to pot them up in my window box and leave them. I pray we are past the 20's at night now. thank you!

Jen

    Bookmark   March 31, 2008 at 5:55PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Just an aside:

On those freeeeezzzzzing mornings I mentioned before, I'd go out to check on the planter to find the flowers zapped, and the foliage frozen solid. But later in the day, the foliage would thaw and be perfectly fine! Or even if they stayed frozen solid for a couple of days straight, they'd come right out of it in fine shape.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2008 at 2:39PM
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sarahbarah27(5)

From my experience, when i put pansies out early and they get hit with a frost, the leaves tend to turn purple-ish. They do fine other wise. Its just an aesthetic thing, if you don't mind the purple leaves for a little while then go ahead, they should be fine!!! Good Luck!

    Bookmark   April 3, 2008 at 7:30AM
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tawilson

When I lived in a Zone 5 I had Pansies blooming throughout winter. Even in the snow. Since moving to a zone 7/8 I planted my Pansies last month. Around March 5th or so and they love the cool weather.
When I lived in Oklahoma they didn't do well at all...it was too hot for them where I have them planted.
I would say that if your ground isn't frozen and you can get them in, try it. I wouldn't put them back inside in the heat...it will kill them going back and forth.

    Bookmark   April 3, 2008 at 11:16AM
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