The first day of spring arrived. We've had an up and down winter this year, so to me it wasn't so bad. I feel like we didn't have so many of the bitter cold, windy days which made things much more tolerable. I do enjoy the different seasons, but I'm always glad to see the first signs of spring! Here at our Kitchener location we started our spring planting the first couple weeks of January. Pansies are the first crop of the year. We grow a wide range of different size pots, bowls baskets and containers. Walking into a greenhouse full of pansies on a cold, gloomy day brings a sense of calm and happiness to our bodies. The smell of the fresh soil and water reminds us about the things in life we can sometimes take for granted. It's always nice to take time to "stop and smell the roses."
Now that the snow has melted and the weather is slowly warming up, pansies can be put outside. They love the cool weather and can even take a slight frost. I always tell people to get their plants early and just keep an eye on the nighttime temperatures. The frost will not kill the plants, but it will damage the open blooms. So if possible, bring them in for the night or cover them with a plastic or cloth to keep the frost off the blooms.
Pansies are also great to have because they are relatively low maintenance. Besides loving the cooler weather, they can be planted or placed in almost any location and do well with moderate watering. It's a good idea to pinch off the spent blooms to encourage more to come. I always find it rather grounding to deadhead pansy pots.
Another plus is that if you leave the pansies in planted in the ground, they may reseed themselves and bloom again next year. You will find that as the weather gets warmer the blooms tend to stretch, you can always cut them right back and wait for them to bloom again. You can enjoy them all over again going in to the fall! We are now open for the season and are looking forward to another wonderful year.