Dainty, small-headed pansies in shades of purple, violet, cream and yellow, appear in profusion for a long period throughout the summer. The flowers of this annual or short-lived perennial are edible and can be used to garnish puddings or add to salads. Perfect plant for the woodland garden, they also make very pretty addition to posies. If the flowers are left on the plant they will self-seed freely, otherwise pick them regularly to encourage more to form.
Garden care: Early sowings can be done in a cold frame, into trays of good seed compost and gradually hardened off before planting out. Alternatively sow directly into a well-prepared seed bed. Gently thin the seedlings out to 15cm apart when they are large enough to handle.