Impatiens are stunning plants that look good in pots, summer bedding, and other outdoor settings. You may be familiar with them bursting ripe seeds at the slightest touch. In this post, we will tackle well-researched answers about the process of overwintering your Impatiens plants.
To keep your impatiens plants alive over the winter, maintain the temperature at 55°F. This temperature can keep your impatiens flowering during this season. Otherwise, they'll be fine if it's warmer than 45°F.
During winter, you should put them in individual pots and place them on a windowsill under the staging in a heated conservatory or a cool room.
Aside from overwintering your impatiens, it would help if you also learned about proper growing and care throughout the year to achieve dazzling blooms. We suggest you keep reading to know every detail about impatiens.
How To Bring Impatiens Indoors For The Winter
Impatiens are high-temperature plants that develop at their finest at 70°F to 80°F during the daytime and 65°F to 70°F at night.
To keep your impatiens alive during the winter, it would be best to individually plant them in pots and keep them at a temperature of 55°F. Alternatively, you can position them under the staging in a heated conservatory on a windowsill.
Please follow the methods below to overwinter your impatiens.
1. Bring In The Impatiens
After inspecting and grooming the impatiens, treat them for any pest or disease concerns. Also, before putting them in an area with bright lighting, warmth, and a moderate amount of moisture, it would be best to cut off about a third of the plant.
If you put the plant in places with inadequate natural light, it would be best to supplement the light. Place a plant light approximately 5" above the plant's top for around 12 hours daily for best results.
2. Take Tip Cuttings
Take 3" to 6" long tip clippings to keep your Impatiens from appearing twisted and woody at the end of the winter season. We suggest utilizing a knife or sterile scissors if you want a nice and clean cut.
Once you finish, eliminate the leaves at the lower part of the cuttings, then plant the clippings in a potting mix. Ensure that the mixture is light and moist. Further, put the clippings in a location that has filtered light.
You can also utilize a plastic bag as a greenhouse. To use it, place the impatiens inside and leave it uncovered rather than putting the plastic upside down. You'll know that the clippings produced root when you notice new growth.
Prepare to slowly increase the size of the containers or ease out of them when spring arrives. Please note that it is best to fertilize only when the plant is actively growing and when the soil is consistently damp.
3. Collect Impatiens Seed
Although many hybrid plants produce healthy seeds, their offsprings rarely resemble the parent plant. Therefore, only collect seeds from non-hybrid impatiens.
Start sowing the collected seed indoors at the beginning of March. Add seeds to the moist soilless mix and push down. Further, you can add a thin coating of medium over the seed. Remember to keep seeds warm.
Types Of Impatiens
This type of impatiens is the most popular one for the shade gardens. You can find it in a dizzying array of forms, which includes single-flowered, double-flowered, and variegated ones.
New Guinea Impatiens
This species of impatiens is popular for gardeners because of its brightly colored blooms and variegated foliage. In addition to being resistant to the elements, it is good that they can be adaptable to most light situations.
Varieties Of Impatiens
Super Elfin Series
This variety of impatiens is a widely spreading plant that comes in a wide range of pastel hues. Plus, it falls under the species of Impatiens walleriana.
This variety falls on the Impatiens walleriana type and has orange and pretty pink blossoms. Additionally, its flowers have red outlines.
Tom Thumb Series
It is a dwarf variety of impatiens that are double-flowered. Its flowers are enormous and brightly colored. Moreover, it falls under the Impatiens balsamina species.
How To Grow Impatiens
If you want to incorporate impatiens into your garden, we offer the following tips to guide you:
Check The Soil Temperature
Before you plant your impatiens in the ground, it would be best to confirm if the soil is already warm since they are oversensitive to cold weather.
We suggest setting out the transplant of your impatiens in early spring. Or you might want to sow impatiens seed inside your home 8 to 10 weeks before the last frost.
Plant Impatiens In Soils Rich In Organic Matter
You can plant impatiens in soil that contains lots of organic matter. You also need to ensure that the soil drains well.
If you have the Impatiens walleriana variety, we suggest placing them only in an area where they can get light to medium shade. On the other hand, the New Guinea Impatiens should always have their roots moist to tolerate more direct sunlight.
Space Impatiens Appropriately
If you want to achieve taller impatiens, it would be best to place them closer together. But if you go for a wider spacing, they will spread out widely, filling in the gaps. Also, if you want to use them as ground cover, you should space them farther apart.
Use Well-draining Potting Soil
Your plants will thrive in a general purpose, well-draining potting soil that contains a slow-release fertilizer.
Select impatiens with similar watering and exposure needs if you plan to grow them with other annuals or perennials in the same area.
How To Care For Impatiens
Dry spells can cause withering in impatiens. Thus, it would be best to water them frequently to keep the soil wet.
Improve the soil's water-retention capacity by adding organic matter, then covering the area with mulch. If your impatiens are in pots, you may need to water them daily, especially during dry, hot weather.
Use a slow-release granular fertilizer or compost when planting impatiens. If you want to grow them in containers, we suggest feeding your impatiens with liquid fertilizers more often.
Impatiens don't require pruning, but if it grows too long and slim, you can pinch them back to stimulate bushier growth. Your plants will hit back in a few days with a fresh round of blossoms. Moreover, since they clean themselves, you won't have to deadhead impatiens flowers.
Pests and Diseases
Impatiens have several pests or bug problems. These include:
- Impatiens Downy Mildew
- Flower Thrips
- Spider Mites
- Gray Mold
- Fungal Leaf Spot
- Root Know Nematode
To get rid of these stubborn pests, use either the following solutions and procedures:
For most pest problems in your impatiens plants, this oil is an effective solution to get rid of them. All you need to do is to put some in a spray bottle and spray the infested areas.
You can use this solution in thrips- and aphid-infested impatiens. This solution doesn't need mixing since you can purchase it in a spray bottle. However, you must be careful when using it as it may irritate your eyes.
Insecticidal soaps kill thrips and aphids by breaking down their coating and destroying cellular function. So, it would be best to coat the plant thoroughly to eliminate them.
Horticultural Oil Sprays
If you can't find insecticidal soaps, you can use horticultural oil sprays as an alternative. It is less toxic to humans. However, we suggest using safety gear since it can irritate your eyes and skin.
Just like the first two solutions, you must spray it on the infested areas in your impatiens. Horticultural oil sprays work by drowning the pests and their larvae. Please note that you should only use this solution when the temperature is below 90 °F.
What Are The Garden Uses Of Impatiens
Incorporating impatiens plants would be best if you want to beautify your garden. This plant is an excellent selection for your garden or yard because of its rapid growth and plenty of blooms. The following are a few examples of where to use them:
Impatiens are useful as container fillers or anywhere you need consistent color with little work. It will also display best as bedding plants.
You can also use this as a ground cover. You can opt to plant impatiens in front of a border. Also, it would be best to use it under shrubs and trees. And you can even grow it in hanging baskets and window boxes, as well.
We recommend using impatiens varieties with flowers as accent plants in cottage or English gardens. This plant can make such an area appealing and attractive, especially if you have them in pastel tones.
Add a splash of color to a tropical landscape by planting sun-loving types with brightly colored blossoms. Choose colors like coral, orange, or salmon.
Container Plantings or Indoor Plants
There are double-flowered varieties that are eye-catching complements to container plantings. You can also make these varieties as indoor flowering plants.
Jellyfish Hanging Baskets
As a further use, you can create a fascinating jellyfish hanging basket using impatiens. Check out the youtube video below!
Wrap It All Up
Overwintering impatiens is straightforward to do. All you have to do is put some effort and patience into caring for them during the winter.
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