Care for New Guinea Impatiens

July 23, 2014 – 09:13 pm


Growing New Guinea impatiens in containers allows you to enjoy a big show of bright blooms just about anywhere. Brighten up a kitchen windowsill, sunroom or patio with these non-stop flowering plants.

These New Guinea hybrids feature a shrubby habit and large flowers. Impatiens flowers are typically single, with 5 flat petals. You'll find them in shades of pink, red, mauve, and white.

Part of the attraction with New Guinea impatiens hybrids is the foliage: lush, lance-shaped leaves are bold and often tinged with red-bronze, or splashed with bright green or yellow.

How to Care for New Guinea Impatiens

Shed some light. Impatiens won't bloom if they don't get enough light. When growing impatiens indoors, it can be challenging to find a spot where they'll get at least 4 hours of bright, indirect sun each day. Don't have a spot near a sunny window? Move your potted impatiens outdoors -- just keep it shaded from hot, direct sun in summer.

Water regularly. Keep the soil evenly moist, but not soggy. Flowering plants are thirsty, and they dry out quickly in containers, so check them often. Impatiens will quickly wilt if they are allowed to dry out.

Deadhead spent blooms. Cut off flowers as soon as they fade to keep plants looking their best and to promote more blooms.

Repot plants. You'll get the most blooms by keeping your impatiens slightly pot-bound, so move up to a bigger pot only when the roots fill the pot. Repot in fall, after the flowering season is over. Use a pot with drainage holes to prevent overwatering, which can cause root rot.

New Guinea Impatiens Growing Tips

Origin: New Guinea

Height: Up to 15 in (38 cm)

Light: Bright light; no direct sun in summer.

Water: Keep soil evenly moist, not soggy.

Humidity: Moderate humidity. Place pot on a tray of wet pebbles to raise the humidity around it.

Temperature: Average room temperatures 60-75°F/16-24°C

Soil: Non-acid medium, such as peat moss-based potting mix.

Fertilizer: Feed every 2 weeks from spring through fall with a high-potassium liquid fertilizer diluted by half.

Propagation: Take 4 in (10 cm) stem tip cuttings in spring or summer. They'll root easily in water or moist soil. Sow impatiens seeds in spring or early summer.


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