Seasonal color change always used to be a challenge for me. I couldn’t bear to yank out summer annuals that were still blooming their hearts out late in the year. However if I waited until they were killed by the first freeze, their replacements were more difficult to find and didn’t have a chance to get established before really cold weather, so they didn’t bloom much until spring. Thankfully now I know I don’t have to choose between a rock and a hard place. My winter color now gets tucked in without disturbing my summer annuals.
Here in North Texas we are still a little over a month away from our first average killing frost. Pansies, snapdragons, Johnny Jump Ups and dianthus can be found currently in nurseries. This time of year I like to buy them in six packs or 4” square pots. I find that I can tuck in plants this size without disturbing my summer bloomers. By planting my winter annuals now, they can coexist with my summer annuals until they get slimed by that first freeze. By then my winter beauties will have become established and add that needed color spot to an otherwise mainly dormant flower bed.
The photo above shows newly planted pansies tucked around existing Spanish moss rose.