Impatiens is one of the best and brightest color accent for shady areas. Dead heading will help plants to continue to bloom all summer long.
The first time you encounter the exploding seed pods of Impatiens you will never forget why they are called 'Touch-Me-Nots.' One of my favorite Impatiens is the colorful New Guinea, but there is no denying the classic look of the basic white bedding Impatiens, the single white flower in a sea of green is sharp and clean.
Impatiens are a shade garden staple because they are easy, versatile, and provide great color late spring to first frost. They are also great in hanging baskets or wherever you need a little extra color, as long as they are protected from afternoon sun.
Now there are so many different kinds of Impatiens available from low growing bedding types to tall Poor Man Orchids – like I.Balsamnea or a sure favorite I.Balfourii. You are sure to find something perfect for that bare shady spot when shopping for Impatiens.
Here are some varieties to look for when you come to Portland Nursery.
Bedding Impatiens - wide range of colors, your classic Impatiens used for large mass plantings or tucking into containers.
Accent: 8-10" tall
Dazzler: 8-10" tall
Super Elfin: 10-12" tall (shown above)
New Guinea - wide range of colors, distinctive pointed leaves and large flowers, this is such a striking plant, looks great in a tropical planter.
Sun Patiens: 15-20" tall – heat tolerant and grows in full sun
Paradise: 15-20" tall
Painted Paradise: 8-12" tall – variegated leaves with cream and red (star of the garden) (shown above)
Rosebud - wide range of colors, cute dainty flowers, rose look-a-likes for the shade
Silhouette: 10-12' tall – large double flowers
Fiesta: 10-12" tall – a party in your plant
Variegated: "Summer Ice" 10-12" tall – attractive cream edged green leaves
Fanciful: 8-10" tall – multi-petaled flowers
Exotic – Fusion: 10-16" tall – cool tropical colors, yellow, peach, and coral
Trailing- Butterfly: 10-12" tall – sweet little flowers, great for hanging baskets
I. Balfourii - pink and white
Flower stock could be up to 3'to 4' tall and readily re-seeds. This plant is admired by all in the front parking lot of our Stark St. store. Their light airy flowers sway in the wind and really catch your eye.
I. Balsamina - wide range of colors mostly a spectrum of pink to reds (shown in side panel). 12"wide x 27" tall – tooth lance-shaped leaves with 2" wide flowers
I. Arguta – light to medium blue
24" tall – attractive to bees, butterflies, and birds
Hardy z 7-9 (photo by Antonio Costa).
I. Niamniamesis – Congo Series: 18-36" tall - Truly exotic with dangling orange, yellow and green flowers shaped like elf shoes. It also makes a good house plant.
Common Name: Balsam, Touch-Me-Not, Snap weed, Buzy Lizzy, and some are known as the poor man's orchid.
Origin: There are 850 species found around the world except Australia and South America.
Culture: Impatiens prefer moist well drained soil with protection from strong winds and afternoon sun. Propagate annuals from seed or stem cutting. Some species self-sow and are very effective re-seeders but their seedlings are easy to pull up.
Maintenance: This annual flower benefits from tip pruning of the faster growing shoots to encourage shrubby growth and more abundant flowers.
Pest and Disease: Impatiens have been known to have problems with aphids and slugs but their biggest enemy is the weather. They should not go outside until the weather is above 50 degrees because cold damp shade will rot them out. In cooler climates, watch out for over watering. Botrytis can occur if cool and overly damp.