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Do have impatiens, please!

Updated on February 16, 2018
Mickie Gee profile image

Mickie Gee is a retired librarian and a grandmother. She learned all her book repair tricks on the job!

Impatiens in a summer garden


A colorful flowering plant that loves shade!

Every spring I go to the garden shop and try to find something new to plant. I end up I trying a few new plants, but I always buy a flat of impatiens. I love to buy them in mixed colors. Happy colors add a joyful feeling to the shady areas of my yard.

Just why do I love this flowering plant? It loves the shade! Since my yard is well established with nice trees I have lots of shade. In fact, I have trouble every year finding enough sun for growing vegetables. Oh, and this flower does not mind that I sometimes mis-spell its name (impatients).

Impatiens are a plant that I never have trouble growing. Have some impatiens! I promise you will not be sorry.

(The image of the flowering impatiens shown above was taken by me in my back yard. The impatiens you see are red, pale pink and dark pink.)

Impatiens--read more about this shade loving plant:

The white impatiens shown to the right are New Guinea and can take some sun! (image from Nature Hills--click here to go there)

Yes, Impatiens take their name from the Latin, impatiens, referring to the sudden bursting of the ripened seed pod when they are touched. (See one of these pods in the early stages in the image below.)

Impatiens are popular because they're easy-to-grow and flower in shade until the first hard frost. In fact, I have had blooming impatiens at Thanksgiving here in Alabama. (if you go to a garden nursery, and ask for "impatients" I promise you will find these wonderful shade loving flowering plants!)

Today's species are more tolerant of sun than many older varieties, but too much sun will stunt their growth, resulting in shorter plants with smaller leaves and not as many flowers.

Impatiens are available in many colors - red, scarlet, pink, white, rose and mauve - and in star patterns and bi-colors with light colors inside the flowers and darker colors at the margins of the petals. These flowers come in single, semi double or fully double forms.

When selecting impatiens plants at a garden center, I look for the smallest, healthiest plants. By 'small', I mean short. By 'healthy' I mean the darkest green with lots of leaves. Leggy or tall plants in a flat do not grow as well. I have been told that flats of plants with blooms on them will not grow as vibrant because they are too occupied with producing seeds thru the flowers.

An Impatiens Seed Pod: - This shade loving plant flower just might re-seed.

Impatiens seed pod
Impatiens seed pod | Source

This seed pod (in the very center of the image) will grow big and fat--when touched even slightly, it will burst open. The seed will fly all over and grow into new plants next season!

(The image of the impatiens seed pod shown above is originally from Flickr user Carl Lewis. I cropped his image for use here.)

Dragonfly Lanterns to accompany your impatiens: - Dragonflies and impatiens look lovely together!

My lantern is over 10 years old and I dearly love it. The oriental flavor of the design fits nicely with impatiens in my shady flower bed. You will be quite lucky if you can find one!

If you love dragonflies, I found a couple of lanterns for you below. Click on one of the links and go explore Amazon.

A good substitute for my outdoor lantern:

Fat Seed Pods Ready to Burst Open! (click on smaller images to open them) - Not impatiens, but the seed pods here are very similar! (images are mine)

Click thumbnail to view full-size
A seed pod -- violaTiny seeds will land on the dirt and grow more plants.
A seed pod -- viola
A seed pod -- viola
Tiny seeds will land on the dirt and grow more plants.
Tiny seeds will land on the dirt and grow more plants.

Shady impatiens on Amazon! - Available for purchasing now:

Get ready for your growing season now! Click on any product below to browse. Thanks.

I love this color impatiens for your garden.

Outsidepride Impatiens Baby Orange - 1000 Seeds
Outsidepride Impatiens Baby Orange - 1000 Seeds

This color will brighten up the shady patches in your own garden.


What fertilizer do you prefer for your garden? - Blooming plants need nourishment! Buy on Amazon.

I use Dynamite on my impatiens. Want to see what this product is? Click Dynamite Plant and Tomato Food. You will be taken to my article about this amazing product.

If you do not see your brand here, go to Amazon and find it, then put it on the list! Thanks!

Impatiens gardening tip:

Impatiens rarely need much fertilizer. An overdose of liquid fertilizer which is quick-acting, will give them too much nitrogen all at once. They are stimulated to produce abundant foliage, so they have little energy left to produce flowers. This tender foliage also attracts aphids and other insects. Use a slow-acting, granular product sparingly, in the spring. From: Yardener.

Thanks for visiting my shady garden page. I hope I inspired you to try impatiens in your flower beds this year.

© 2010 Mickie Goad

Did you enjoy reading about impatiens? - Then sign my guestbook, please ~

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    • profile image

      poutine 5 years ago

      My impatiens are not doing very well this summer, I'm upset because I love them.

      Mine are half sun, half shade.

    • hlkljgk profile image

      hlkljgk 5 years ago from Western Mass

      doh! no wonder mine aren't growing - they're in the sun. why i didn't read about them first...

    • namcam profile image

      namcam 5 years ago

      Interesting lens. I especially like the small double impatiens, even though they sometimes seem to have more problems than the regular ones.

    • MariaMontgomery profile image

      MariaMontgomery 6 years ago from Central Florida, USA

      Great gardening lens. I just put out some impatiens today. I also found several seedlings from where last year's impatiens had reseeded themselves. Those are always a welcome bonus.

    • BunnyFabulous profile image

      BunnyFabulous 6 years ago from Central Florida

      This lens is great; I'm just about to start trying to grow some impatiens from seed as a project with my daughter. Our front porch is shady and perfect for these beautiful, colorful flowers. I think impatiens make shady areas look really happy.

    • profile image

      julieannbrady 7 years ago

      Ah, yes indeed impatiens! Hubby particularly loves to pick these out for our front yard. And, he has learned a bit of patience for the impatiens in watching them bloom. Sometimes our front yard gets too much sun and flowers might get crispy and fried. Love them!

    • SusanDeppner profile image

      Susan Deppner 7 years ago from Arkansas USA

      Impatiens are so beautiful. I love the mixed colors, too. And, I have a lot of shade so perhaps impatiens would do very well in my yard despite my not-so-green thumb!

    • OhMe profile image

      Nancy Tate Hellams 7 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      For fuller looking impatiens, my step mother always added a mixture of ammonia and water. I don't know why it works but it sure does. I was just thinking this morning that it was time to add the Ammonia/water to mine. This is a great lens about Impatiens and I sure enjoyed my visit here. I have grown Impatiens for many years but learned new things here today. Thanks. I wish I were an angel so I could bless this colorful, happy lens but since I am not, I will just say "Bless Your Heart"!