Bright, cheery blooms make impatiens one of the all-time favorites among annual flowers. Impatiens are valued not only for their wide range of colors, but also because they are one of the few annuals that will thrive in low light conditions. Although most people prefer to start impatiens from bedding plants, save seed from your favorite impatiens and plant the seeds the next spring. Gather seeds from healthy, mature plants after the blooms fade in late summer.
Locate the small green seed pod at the base of an impatiens bloom. The tube-shaped pod will be easily visible when the blooms wilt and drop off.
Watch for the impatiens seed pod to plump up into a spiral shape, then gather the seeds. Clip the seed pod with a pair of scissors and let it fall into a paper bag. When the pods are ready, they will pop and expel the tiny, dark brown seeds.
Put the paper bag in a cool, dry place and allow the seeds to dry for a few days. If the seed pods haven't expelled all of the impatiens seeds, shake the bag to give it a bit of assistance.
Check to see if the seeds are dry. Dry impatiens seeds will be so hard that you won't be able to smash them with your finger.
Spread the contents of the bag onto a light-colored surface, and pick out the leaves, stems, and other plant matter. Don't worry if you don't get it all; small debris mixed in with the impatiens seeds won't be a problem.
Put the dry impatiens seeds in a plain white envelope, and label the envelope. Store the impatiens seeds in a cool, dry place until spring.