Impatiens Flowers - How to Grow?

New Guinea impatiens
The impatiens flowers commonly sold at nurseries in North America are hybrids and treated as annual plants. They are native to tropical Africa and easily damaged by frosts.


The widely grown cultivars of impatiens flowers are typically short plants, attaining a height of not more than 1 foot. Some, such as the 'Super Elfin' series, stay much shorter (thus their popularity -- and their name). Impatiens flowers come in a variety of colors, including white, red, pink, violet, coral and purple. Even a yellow cultivar has recently been developed.

Sun and Soil Requirements for Impatiens Flowers:

Grow impatiens flowers in well-drained soil enriched by humus. Although impatiens flowers can, with sufficient water, be grown in partial sun in northerly regions, their great virtue is that they thrive in the shade.

Care for Impatiens Flowers:

If they start looking leggy late in the summer, trim off the top third of their vegetation. This will promote the emergence of new impatiens flowers, plus the plants will look better overall.

Uses for Impatiens Flowers:

Impatiens flowers are one of the dominant bedding plants in North America, especially for shaded areas. They are also used in container gardens, ranging from hanging baskets to window boxes. In this capacity, some growers prefer the "New Guinea" type, considering it to be a showier plant (especially in terms of its foliage). New Guineas can also take a little more sunshine.

A relatively recent hybrid put out by the folks at Sakata, going by the brand name, SunPatiens®, is said to be suitable for both full sun and partial shade.

Origin of the Name for Impatiens Flowers:

Impatiens flowers take their name from the Latin, impatiens, "impatient." They are so called because their ripe seed pods will sometimes burst open from even a light touch (as if they were "impatient" to open). This characteristic is especially apparent in a relative named, "jewelweed, " indigenous to eastern North America. (see below).

Jewelweed: Impatiens Flowers of the North:

Although jewelweed shares some similarities with the impatiens flower sold at nurseries, one would never confuse the two (at maturity).

There are two types of jewelweed:

  • Spotted jewelweed or "spotted touch-me-not" (Impatiens capensis) is orange
  • Pale jewelweed or "pale touch-me-not" (Impatiens pallida) is yellow

The nickname, "touch-me-not" refers, again, to the tendency of the ripe seed pod to burst apart at the slightest touch.

The Ever-Popular Impatiens Flowers: Familiarity Breeds Contempt:

Impatiens flowers have much to offer, including shade-tolerance, long-lasting blooms and brightly colored blossoms that come in a variety of colors. So what's not to like? If there's a knock on them in some circles, it's that they're so common: impatiens flowers are a victim of their own success.

As I argued in a blog post on so-called "overused plants, " however, it's important not to let other people dictate your plant-purchase decisions for you. Garden snobs who write snarky blogs may look down their noses at the idea of planting "overused" plants such as impatiens, but remember this: such gardeners are writing for each other, to impress each other, to out-snark each other.


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Just got back from outside my house

Did some spring (summer) cleaning.
Trimmed all the bushes cleaned out the the planting beds i'm going to go to home depot and go buy some flowers (impatiens)....
Came inside the house thirsty as hell...had some nice cold sweet tea.
Just waiting for the wife to get home
Life is good

Silks Are Forever 30" UV-Proof Outdoor Artificial Impatiens Flower Bush -Coral (case of 4)
Home (Silks Are Forever)
  • This listing is for 1 case. You will receive 4 items per case, 1 item shown in picture.
  • Manufactured specifically for outdoor use using U.V. inhibited materials
  • Height - 30
  • Flower Clusters - 16 each
Outsidepride Outsidepride Impatiens Baby Orange - 1000 Seeds
Lawn & Patio (Outsidepride)
  • Season: Annual
  • USDA Zones: 3 - 10
  • Height: 8 - 10 inches
  • Bloom Color: Orange
  • Sowing Rate: 6 - 8 seeds per plant

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