How to Plant Impatiens Flowers


Impatiens are colorful flowers that grow well in cooler conditions and some shade, which makes them ideal for shade gardens, container planting or house plants. Growing to a height of 2 feet or less, impatiens can fit into almost any landscape. While impatiens can easily be started from seed, the seeds are very tiny and have a slow rate of growth, which means that in Northern states you have to start them at least eight weeks before the last frost date. Impatiens flowers can easily be found at flower centers and farmers markets, and purchasing flowers that have already been started will save you weeks of work.

Planting In Ground

Step 1

Choose impatiens flower seedlings that have several buds, but are not in bloom yet, for best blooming results.

Step 2

Wait until there is no longer a danger of frost in your gardening area and select a location for your impatiens that receives partial shade and has good drainage.

Step 3

Break up the soil 6 to 8 inches deep, and remove any stones and debris from the dirt. If the soil feels slightly dry, work some compost or chopped leaves in with the loosened dirt to help it retain some moisture. Smooth the soil back over in the planting area.

Step 4

Dig a hole for your impatiens with the trowel. Make the planting hole the same size as the container holding the seedling. Space impatiens flowers 10 inches apart.

Step 5

Remove the seedling from the container and be careful with the root system, keeping as many roots intact as possible.

Step 6

Set the seedling in the ground at the same depth as it is in the pot. Press the soil gently around the roots, and water well.

Step 7

Water daily until the flowers show signs of growth, which means their roots are established.

Planting In Pots

Step 1

Fill the container with a soil-less potting mix, available at any lawn and garden center or nursery.

Step 2

Remove the impatiens from their current containers, being very gentle with the root system.

Step 3

Plant the flowers at the same depth as the container, and pack the potting mix around the roots.

Step 4

Water daily until the impatiens show signs of growth. For best results, on every third day feed the flowers liquid fertilizer when watering. Liquid fertilizer is available at garden centers. Follow the directions on the package of your particular brand.

Step 5

Keep pots or containers in areas that receive morning sun and afternoon shade.

Tips and Warnings

  • Impatiens will not hold up to a frost. If a frost is forecast for your area, cover your plants in the garden with paper bags, or move them indoors if they are in containers.

Things You'll Need

  • Trowel
  • Container
  • Soil-less potting mix
  • Liquid fertilizer


  • Yardener: Planting Impatiens
  • Master Gardener Online: How To Grow Your Best Impatiens

Who Can Help

  • Iowa State University Extension: Starting Impatiens From Seeds
Keywords: planting impatien flowers, planting impatiens containers, growing impatiens

About this Author

A freelance writer for more than 12 years, Traci Vandermark has written extensively on health and fitness topics. She is a student of health, fitness and nutrition at the International Institute Of Holistic Healing, certified by the American Association of Nutritional Consultants. Her articles have appeared in Catskill Country Magazine, The Lookout Magazine, Capper's, Birds and Blooms and Country Discoveries, to name a few.