Every year as the brilliant colors of the summer flowers fade, I like to plant a few pansies. And I am not alone, along with mums pansies are among the most popular cool season blooms. Not only are they are easy to grow, but they provide beautiful color throughout late fall and into winter.
Pansies are part of the viola family, which contains 500 species – including pansies and violets. Pansies have flowers with five rounded petals. Some call their blooms a heart-shaped or chubby-baby face. Pansy flowers can be blue, white, orange, yellow, red, or purple.
Pansy plants grow low to the ground and most will never reach more than 8 inches high. These plants also don’t grow more than a foot wide, so they are perfect options to fill those pots on your front steps. Their foliage is bright green and is a favorite treat for snails and slugs.
Pansy blossoms are edible and have a slight mint flavor. Over the years untreated flowers have become a gourmet addition to salads. Some bakers also preserve the blossoms with sugar to be used as decorations for cakes!
Fun Fact – The name “pansy” actually originates from the French word, pensie, which means “thought or remembrance.”
Related Science Activity
- Press a Flower – Keep a record of the beautiful pansies you find by pressing it. Place a pansy bloom between two sheets of wax paper and place this in between two heavy books. After a week or so, check to see if your pansy has dried. You can preserve the color by laminating the pressed bloom!
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Links to Research