The Q&A Archives: Viola Plants Turning Brown

Question: I have violas planted on the northeast side of our house. They look really good right now, but there are a few that look like they are drying up. This happened last year too - all the plants turned brown brown by the end of July, and looked like they'd died, but they came back in late fall. Would it help to trim them back? I try to water them 2 or 3 times a week. The other flowers in the flower bed don't die back.

Answer: Violas and other violets are not tolerant of heat, and do "shut down" when summer hits in warm climates. They are only good summer-long plants in cooler growing zones (5 and north). If you really like the looks of them, try growing them in hanging baskets or pots in the spring and replacing them with other plants for summertime. Then they won't interfere with the appearance of your flower beds. Cutting them back makes them look less rangey, but they won't revive until temperatures cool down in fall. Hope this helps!

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