This section is from the book "Commercial Gardening Vol2", by John Weathers (the Editor). Also available from Amazon: Commercial Gardening, A Practical & Scientific Treatise For Market Gardeners.
Originally derived from Viola tricolor, the Pansy has been enormously improved and vastly increased in size. At one time, more particularly in- northern districts, societies existed to further the claims of the flower, and the show and fancy varieties were then seen to perfection. To-day a large number of the fancy sorts (fig. 233) are raised from seeds, and the strains of such as Trimar~ deau, Parisian, Masterpiece, Ne Plus Ultra, and others realize good prices. It is largely the varieties of the two first-named strains that figure so prominently in our flower markets in spring, whither they are brought when in flower.
Their cultivation differs in no essential particular from that of their tufted namesake, the two being likeminded as to soils. Cuttings, however, never appear in the same abundance or profusion on Pansies, and unless the plants are required to produce seeds they should be early cut back to induce the formation of a good and suitable cutting growth.
Seeds of any of these fancy sorts may be sown in July, preferably in boxes or pans, so that the seedlings may be cared for in the usual way.
Fig. 233. - Fancy Pansy.
Thus treated the seeds soon vegetate, and the seedlings, having been given the shelter of a cold frame, may in September be transferred to the open nursery beds. Seeds may also be sown in heat in January and February. The young plants should be pricked out into shallow boxes when large enough to handle, and later on may be placed singly in 3-in. pots or planted out 4 in. apart in frames. They will be in bloom by the middle of May and early June, and are then fit for sale in pots, or with the roots wrapped in hay or moss. [e. h. j].