Q: I want to pull up my impatiens and replace them with pansies. What is the latest date I can plant and still have thriving pansies?
A: You can plant as late as December if you choose, but you’ll have to spend more money on larger plants then. A pansy plant needs a root system as big as a softball in order to bloom in cold weather. Smaller plants, like those in nursery “six packs”, need four weeks of strong growth in warm soil before they can bloom reliably. To get good blooms, gardeners should plant the smaller pansies in early October, larger three-inch pots in November and even bigger four-inch pots of pansies in December.