Impatiens Flowers: Impatiens Walleriana

Brighten shady nooks with America’s top bedding plant: Impatiens
Related To:
187839268

187839268

Busy Lizzie flowers

Photo by: muangsatun

muangsatun

Add some floral sizzle to your yard’s shady corners with the glowing blooms of impatiens. This annual beauty, known botanically as Impatiens walleriana, is one of the most recognized bedding plants on the market. It’s the go-to bloomer for shady color, and its easy growing ways makes it a favorite for low-maintenance beauty. 

Impatiens flowers open in nearly every shade imaginable. Blushing pink, snow white, dusky red, blazing orange, iridescent lavender, deep purple—the only colors missing from the impatiens roster are blue and yellow. You’ll also find a wonderful variety of bicolor flower types, including swirls, blends, picotees and dark shades with white eyes. The hardest part about growing impatiens is choosing which ones you want to grow. 

If you have containers to fill for a shady display, impatiens can easily handle the task. Whether you’re planting pots, window boxes, hanging baskets or a recycled wheelbarrow, you’ll find impatiens flower reliably and steadily all season long. Simply fill your containers with a commercial bagged soil-less mix. These mixes are usually peat moss-based, and they provide an ideal footing for impatiens plants. 

In planting beds, create a base that’s fertile, filled with organic matter and able to retain moisture, but also drain well. Impatiens like a moist but not soggy footing. Work organic matter into soil prior to planting. If your soil is poor, you might consider blending in a bagged landscape mix. In heavy clay, think about creating raised beds. 

Incorporate slow release fertilizer into containers and planting beds. Impatiens walleriana benefits from a steady supply of nutrients to stage its non-stop flower show. In pots, start using a water-soluble bloom booster fertilizer about four weeks after planting. This helps encourage flower buds to form. 

Impatiens doesn’t need deadheading. The name actually comes from the Latin word that means impatient. Horticulturists adopted it because mature seed pods on these bloomers pop open when touched. In fall, you might spot some green seed pods on plants. When they’re plump, a simple touch creates explosive results. It’s sure to cause some giggles for your favorite kids. 

Watch for Disease

There is one fly in the impatiens ointment: downy mildew disease. This deadly fungal disease kills plants and overwinters on plant debris. Once you have it, you shouldn’t plant impatiens in that same spot for several years. Symptoms include pale leaves and stunted growth. Leaves develop a white or gray fuzz on the undersides and eventually fall off plants, creating bare stems. It can wipe out an entire planting bed in a very short time frame. 

If you have infected plants, pull and bag them. Gather any fallen leaves. Spraying fungicides can slow the disease spread from infected to healthy plants, but once the fungus is in a plant, it moves throughout the entire plant. The only option is to pull plants, bag and destroy them. Avoid planting impatiens in the same place year after year. Change soil in containers and sterilize containers from year to year, especially if you have had downy mildew.

Next Up

New Guinea Impatiens: A Colorful Annual to Brighten Shady Spots

Fill your landscape's shade and part-shade spots with the sparkling colors and big blooms of New Guinea impatiens. They're also a high-impact choice for container gardens.

Zinnia Flowers

Celebrate summer by planting a mix of zinnia flowers you can pick and plunk into vases.

Mrs. James' Favorite Plant

This "overgrown daisy" gets a place of honor on Paul James' patio.

Foxy Foxgloves Reach for the Sky

These flowers add vertical drama to any garden.

Pot Marigold: Our Favorite Flowers

These flowers aren't only beautiful—they're also edible!

Growing Petunias

Easy-care petunias can't get enough of the sun. Plant petunia flowers in pots, hanging baskets or beds for vibrant summer color.

How to Grow Gerbera Daisy

Learn about beautiful gerbera daisies and what it takes to achieve garden success with these jewel-tone bloomers.

Cool Colorful Plants

These versatile annuals have exploded in popularity in recent years producing months of color from summer into fall. Take a look at some winners for your garden.

How to Grow Nasturtium

Learn how to plant and care for nasturtium, an old-fashioned, easy-to-grow garden favorite that's been in cultivation since the days of the Inca Empire.

Spring and Summer Annuals

Paint your garden with living color by planting annuals that bloom all summer. Extend the season even more with spring annuals.

Go Shopping

Spruce up your outdoor space with products handpicked by HGTV editors.

What's New in Outdoors

On TV

Fixer Upper

6am | 5c

Fixer Upper

7am | 6c

Fixer Upper

8am | 7c

Fixer Upper

9am | 8c

Fixer Upper

10am | 9c

Fixer Upper

11am | 10c

Fixer Upper

12pm | 11c

Home Town

1pm | 12c

Home Town

2pm | 1c

Home Town

3pm | 2c

Home Town

4pm | 3c

Home Town

5pm | 4c

Home Town

6pm | 5c

Home Town

7pm | 6c
On Tonight
On Tonight

Home Town

8pm | 7c

Home Town

10pm | 9c

Home Town

11pm | 10c

Home Town

1am | 12c

Home Town

2am | 1c

Home Town

3am | 2c

Home Town

4am | 3c

Home Town

5am | 4c

Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss HGTV in your favorite social media feeds.