Pansies are one of the joys of cool season gardening. We expect them to be one of the first flowers on the nursery shelves in the spring, but they're equally great in the fall. Gardeners in warmer climates get to enjoy their smiling faces all winter. Some of the newer pansies can bloom through a light snow, as well as much later into the heat of summer. But we really need them when it's too cold for most other plants to put on a show. Pansies planted in the spring can be clipped back and tucked between summer bloomers, to reemerge refreshed and blooming in the fall. They always out bloom my mums and asters. And their flowers are edible! So if you've pooh-poohed pansies in the past, it's time to give them another look.
Photo: © Marie Iannotti