Viola x wittrockiana

Pansies belong to the botanical family Viola, which includes Violets, Viola, and Pansies, known by earlier generations as Heartsease (Wild Pansy). These have long been a garden favourite.

These popular low growing annuals have large, open-faced flowers in many colours, some plain, some blotched in several shades. The velvety flowers appear in spring and early summer. The leaves are heart shaped. Many different varieties are available, and are well suited to container growth as well as in the garden.

The ideal situation for these plants is a spot where they have shade from the hot afternoon sun, but they will succeed in most garden situations. The condition of the soil should be light and rich. The tender roots of the Pansy should never be brought into contact with any strong manure.

Cultivation consists of regular watering and the application of some weak liquid manure during the flowering season. Regular picking of flowers will encourage further blooms. Keep the bed clear of weeds and the soil surface lightly cultivated. Slugs and snails can be very destructive and eat the Pansy petals. An effective slug and snail bait is the best preventative.