Gardening With Impatiens


Impatiens (Impatiens wallerana) brightens shady garden spaces. Impatiens grow up to 24 inches tall and 24 inches wide. Blooming early summer through mid fall, impatiens produce blooms in orange, pink, purple, white or red. Varieties include single, semi-double and double blooms. Because these annuals thrive in shade, they're useful for brightening up shady spots in your yard. In warmer climates, impatiens may continue to bloom from late fall to early winter.

Step 1

Determine the amount of sunlight your garden receives each day to determine the best type of impatiens. Impatiens cultivars, such as 'Snap Weed,' 'Jewel Weed,' 'Busy Lizzy' and 'Patient Lucy' thrive in the shade. New Guinea impatiens (Impatiens x hawkeri) prefer full to partial sun.

Step 2

Select a flower container with a drainage hole in the bottom, and at least 8 inches of soil depth. Place a layer of pebbles across the bottom of the pot. Pebbles assist with the pot's drainage. Allow two transplants for a 6-inch pot, and three transplants for a 12-inch pot. If you're planting the impatiens in the ground, dig a hole as wide as the root base.

Step 3

Place the impatiens in the flower pot or ground. Add soil to any spaces around the roots. Spread an even level of garden soil across the top of the pot or across the top of the roots in the ground.

Step 4

Water impatiens with 2 inches of water per week. Fertilize impatiens every two weeks with a water-soluble fertilizer.

Step 5

Prune flowers by cutting the stem 3 inches to the roots base in mid to late summer.

Tips and Warnings

  • Use caution when planting impatiens under walnut trees, as walnut trees release a toxin that may be harmful to flowers.

Things You'll Need

  • Garden soil
  • Fertilizer


  • West Virginia University Extension Service: Impatiens
  • Alabama Cooperative Extension System: Impatiens: A Winner in the Shade
  • National Gardening Association: Impatiens Walleriana
  • Iowa State University Extension Service: Growing Impatiens in the Home Garden

Who Can Help

  • Clemson University Extension Service: Impatiens
  • USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map
  • Old Farmer's Almanac: Imaptiens
Keywords: gardening impatiens, impatiens care, planting impatiens

About this Author

Brandii Lacey began writing in 1997 at "The Mountain Times" in Boone, N.C. Her articles appear on, GardenGuides and eHow Home & Garden. She provides travel and lifestyle content for LIVESTRONG.COM. Lacey is the senior plays editor and on the nonfiction editorial team for "Mused Literary Review" magazine. She holds a Bachelor of Science in communications from Appalachian State University.