Earlier this year I noticed that my oval raised garden bed that breaks the patio area from the main backyard lawn area up was full of plants that I didn’t recognize at first. They were everywhere, choking off the roses, astilbe and other plants in that bed.
It didn’t take me too long to realize that I’d had a pansy explosion!
Now, back when I first started my garden in 2002 I planted some pansy and viola seeds and seedlings. The plants came up for a few years due to reseeding, but seemed to have died out by 2006 or so.
I didn’t really mind that the plants had disappeared as Pansies are only decent around here in the Spring and then the plants get leggy and floppy during our hot humid summers. So fine … I had better plants that could use that space.
Well .. I don’t know what happened this year. Maybe the seeds lying dormant in the earth really enjoyed the deep snow cover and extra spring moisture or perhaps, since this flower bed is very close to our two bird feeders – maybe some of the bird seeds we used had pansy seeds in it. I don’t know what happened … but suddenly I had a bed full of pansies.
Last weekend I pulled out most of the pansies. They were so thick I couldn’t even see my strawberry plants or the Phlox that was struggling to grow within the mass of pansy plants.
I have a few other plants that have come up this year that were missing in the last two or three years as well. Some Lily of the Valley that I’d planted at the back of the driveway that had never come up suddenly started to grow this year, and some daylilies that I had right near my front porch, that I thought had died out due to the dryness of the area a few years ago seem to have made an appearance this year. It had to be all that snow cover.
I know, you think I live in the North and we’ve probably got snow all winter long. However, here in Toronto that’s rarely the case. It will snow and then the snow melts away within a few days. This is hard on the plants because it’s fairly cold most winters, and without that protective layer of snow the plants are subject to wind and freezing temperature damage. Thats one reason why I often buy plants that are hardy to a zone or two lower than our supposedly USDA zone 5b rating.
Did you have any surprise plants pop up in your garden beds this year?
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