Impatiens are one of the most popular annuals in North America. They are easy to grow and maintain while providing splashes of bright color to any garden all season long.
Impatiens are native to Eastern Africa and prolific throughout North America. The name is derived from Latin in reference to the way they shoot out seeds when the seed pods open.
There are between 850-1,000 varieties of Impatiens that are grown all over North America. Most are annuals, producing flowers from early June until the first frost. In milder climates, there are also perennial varieties that flower all year long.
Impatiens can grow from 6 inches to 2 feet tall. They are usually bought as transplants, but if seeds are used, start indoors 8-10 weeks prior to the last frost.
Impatiens thrive in partial to full shade with moist, well-drained soil. They are ideal plants to use in shade gardens, pots, and borders.
Cuttings from existing impatiens can be rooted in water or soil if placed in a warm, sunny spot to overwinter. In warmer climates, impatiens can grow tall and spindly so take care to choose varieties that are more compact.
Impatiens played a starring role in Epcot's 16th Annual Flower and Garden Festival. Their multicolored hues were showcased in 100 floating mini gardens in Epcot's ponds.
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