The Garden Community for Garden Lovers

Which is the most advantageous month to plant autumn, winter, and spring flowering violas and pansies?

United Kingdom Gb

Violas and pansies are in the garden centres right now, freshly arrived in. I found that when I planted them last autumn, the ones which I planted in late October didn't flower much at all through the winter, but flowered prolifically when the spring arrived. But the ones I planted in early October had a few extra weeks to make growth and establish themselves while the temperatures were still relatively mild. And those plants did a more significant amount of flowering through the coldest winter months, seeing as they were bigger and more able plants with regard to flowering. I learned from this, as I do so love a bit of colour for winter cheer, and this year am aiming to get baskets planted with them quite early. I have today planted my first basket (illustrated), but then had a thought - is this TOO early to be putting them in!? I am worried these early Sept planted ones might flower throught the autumn only, and then be spent and finished by the time the winter comes, and thus be incapable of performing a display in the winter/spring. Advice on this would be very appreciated. I'd like to know what the best timing of all is for planting. I suspect that many others may be wondering this very same thing.




That basket looks beautiful Jonathan, I think about now is a good time so they will get a good start before the cold weather. brrrr

6 Sep, 2009


The thing you can't anticipate is the autumn weather. If we have a long, mild autumn, aanything planted now will keep growing and be qutie leggy by the time the colder weather arrives. Perhaps the best thing is to stagger the planting over a few weeks so at least something looks good by the time winter arrives

6 Sep, 2009


This all sounds kind of gambly, the being at the mercy of weather. I plant them really quite close together in the baskets, almost touching each other. That way I find their growth remains compact and they don't devlop the sprawling legginess which violas and pansies are inclined to. I caught onto this when I bought a couple of ready-planted baskets from a garden centre, and this is how they were done. The result does seem to be better as they then produce a nice dense, flowering dome shaped display.

6 Sep, 2009


Thankyou for that Jonathan I didn't know that it just shows you learn something new everyday.

6 Sep, 2009


The plugs are 5cm x 5cm. I'm putting them in with a 2cm gap between each.

6 Sep, 2009


Only piece of advice I'd add is to watch the flowers as they finish - if they form seed pods, nip them off. They do sometimes do this, and it helps to remove those to promote flowering next spring and reduce legginess. I never plant mine till towards the end of September, but that's only because the summer stuff still looks good.

7 Sep, 2009


Yes, I always search all over diligently for the pods and pinch them off. And I take off the stalk of it too. Quite a fiddly and time consuming job, doing every one, but that's how much I love them.

7 Sep, 2009


I have a pansy growing through the stems of a large potted fuchsia,all through the summer. Self seeded, as I didn't plant it. It has 4 flowers on it. I have shortened the fuchsia by a half. It is not hardy, and will later be shrouded in a huddle with other large pots of tender plants, under a verandah. It will be interesting to see if the pansy goes through the winter still blooming. If it does bloom on, it could be rated as a very versatile flowering plant.

17 Nov, 2010

How do I say thanks?

Answer question

Related photos

  • Container Chrysanths for Autumn
  • Green pot planting.
  • New blue pot
  • Front door autumn pot

Related blogs


Related questions

Not found an answer?