The Right Fertilizer For Pansies?

Q: The University of Georgia recommends feeding pansies with a soluble 15-2-20 fertilizer in the winter but I can’t find this available for purchase. Is there something else to use?

A: University fertilizer recommendations are based on detailed research, but sometimes research materials don’t jibe with what fertilizer products are actually available. Take a minute to scan the label of a fertilizer product you are thinking of buying. Cold-weather plants, like pansies, ornamental cabbage, etc. like to be fed with nitrate nitrogen, so look for that in the ingredients. Also, soils in Georgia don’t need much phosphorus, so the middle number of the product can be as low as you like. The slow-release 15-9-12 I see at local nurseries works fine.