Pansies are the best kept secret for fall landscapes. Being winter hardy like mums, pansies will survive the frost and the cold winter nights of Michigan. With very little care, pansies will provide beautiful color in fall and again the following spring. Please Note – Pansies will not survive the winter in containers. They must be planted in the ground. It is not recommended to keep them more than one year as they dislike hot weather and get very leggy and untidy during SW Michigan summers. For continuous beauty in the home garden, replace every fall (or spring if you desire) with newly purchased plants.
- Plant in a sunny to partially shaded area in well-worked soil
- Plant approximately 4 – 6” apart
- Water thoroughly after planting and as needed thereafter.
- It is not necessary to mulch or cut back fall pansies
- Remove old flowers as they fade
- Your pansies will not require fertilizer again until spring
Pansies are not deer resistant! You may have problems with deer, you may not. Deer are the greatest threat in early spring after a harsh winter. However, anytime food is scarce they look for green, young and tasty plants.
Listed below are some ideas you can try to discourage the deer:
- Fencing needs to be at least 7-8 feet tall or experiment…Sometimes having dogs that go outside will do the trick
- Several brands of commercial deer repellents are available at garden centers including predator smells. Try rotating use of 2-3 products for best results.
- Sensory Deterrents:
- Sprinkle cayenne pepper around plants
- DIY egg mixtures that smell like rotten eggs.
- Irish Spring Soap – Quarter bars and hang in little mesh bags on plant stakes around the edge of your garden bed(s).