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Dovefromabove

Nick, see your pansy thread where I have extolled the virtues of violas - luvvemtobits!!!

They'll keep going all winter and through the next spring, and if you take care of them you can even keep them for several years and take cutting, not to mention collecting and sowing seeds from them.  

Superb little smiley faces grinning up at us from the terrace outside our dining room door - and some of them have such gorgeous scents - bury your nose in them when they've been sitting in a patch of warm winter sun - mmmmmmmmmmmmm 

Thanks dove 

mine seem to be thriving in the cold weather

Dovefromabove

They're tough as old boots and as pretty as a picture 

Secret Squirrel

I LOVE Violas! They self seed all over the garden, I must have about 25 little plants I have picked out the ground and looking after them in the GH.

I pick the seed pods off and dry them out in paper bags on top of the boiler. I'm so looking forward to the end of February when I start sowing them.

If I could change my wife's name to Viola I would, OK I'm getting sad now. Quit while ahead 

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Dovefromabove

Just keep calling her Viola Mark, see what happens 

When bubble-wrapping the pot that my standard bay is in, I found some little viola seedlings amongst the grit in the pot.  They'll seed any and everywhere 

Anyone know where I still can get some or is it to late?

Secret Squirrel

I have noticed some coming through the gaps in between the slabs on the patio. I have started putting some seed pods along the rest of the gaps, hoping they germinate before the weeds and grass does. It would look lovely to see viola's all over the patio.

Dovefromabove

Try the garden centres - they may well still have some 


 We sat here for our  coffee this morning (well wrapped up) and smiled back at our violas 

our garden centre has sold out, sutton seeds have as well

Dovefromabove

Now's the time to put a note in your diary for next autumn - Buy some violas!!! 

should i be dead heading them, due to a few in the hanging baskets looking like the heads have turned to seed??

Dovefromabove

I do  unless they're in beds where I want them to self seed 

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THANKS DOVE

Planted my new ones last night in a big pot so hopefully they will get themselves settled in

MACAVITYTHECAT

I collected loads of seed heads this year from various types of pansies and violas, mixed them all up and sowed them in big seed trays then planted them out when they had reached about 4 inches of growth but not yet in flower.  It's been great because normally I'm pretty OCD'ish about my colour-schemes but this year I've deliberably let myself not know what colour or size I was planting out and the mix 'n match has created some lovely unique baskets and displays.  Sometimes being random is surprisingly good.

I know this sounds silly but how do you collect the seeds?

MACAVITYTHECAT

If you don't cut the flowerheads off they turn into a star-shaped husk full of seeds. I leave them until they have dried enough to turn dark, then scrape the seeds into an envelope.  If I'm being anal, I mark each envelope (acid-free) individually but this year I just did one big mixed bag and planted randomly.  The germination rate seems to be as good/bad as bought seeds. The fun bit is that even if you keep the seeds seperate they might not grow exactly the same as the parent plant but they are free and even if they are different, I've learned to embrace the difference!

Secret Squirrel

Hi MACAVITYTHECAT

That's what I did, I picked lots of pods, put them in one big paper bag, dried them on top of the boiler and they burst inside the bag. loads of seeds.  I got some trailing ones from a friend. like to see if those make it next year.