Planting Annuals - Impatiens (with video)

ProPlugger Co - Friday, December 14, 2012

Impatiens should be called the “shiekh of the shade garden.” Along with coleus, they're one of the most adaptable flowers for those areas under trees and the like that don’t get much sun. In fact, it is best to keep them out of full sun, if possible, where they will “wither thusly,” to speak in Shakespearean terms.

Planted in a mass or cluster they will attract the eye to those areas of the lawn where deep shadows abide. People often plant them under the canopies of trees. Impatiens are easy to care for and will bloom all summer, so you definitely get your money’s worth out of this one.

How to Plant Impatiens

when to plant impatiensWhen to Plant Impatiens

Plant impatiens in the spring time after all danger of frost has passed.

Where to Plant Impatiens

For best results plant in rich, moist, well-drained soil in light to full shade.

Planting Depth for Impatiens

Impatiens are bedding plants. They are normally sold in cell packs and should be planted to the depth they grew in the cell pack. Simply bury the root ball it is growing in since there is no need to break the root ball apart before planting.

Spacing of Impatiens

Space impatiens about 4-6 inches apart.

Planting Impatiens Using the ProPlugger

The versatile ProPlugger 5-IN-1 will make easy work out of planting a mass of impatiens and other annual bedding plants, while sparing you a lot of uncomfortable bending over or kneeling...and it's so easy to use:

  • Slide either the 2" or 4" Depth Ring  provided onto the end of the ProPlugger to set the depth of the planting hole.
  • Next, step down on the sturdy foot-peg, letting your body weight and gravity do most of the work.
  • Give the handlebar a slight twist to break the soil plug loose and pull up to remove a plug of soil. You've just dug your planting hole in less than 5 seconds! The soil gets stored in the tool as you work and when it's full, simply turn the tool upside-down and it empties right out.

Take me to the 5-IN-1 product page

Feeding Impatiens

If grown in fairly rich soil, impatiens will require only a light feeding of an all purpose fertilizer right after planting. Mulching around the plants with aged compost or well rotted manure will achieve the same effect as a light feeding of fertilizer.

Disease and Pest Problems

Impatiens are susceptible to powdery mildew, a disease that is currently spreading in some greenhouses across the country. The disease causes the leaves and stems to turn a milky white. Purchase healthy plants from a reputable garden center. Preventative measure like proper spacing and good air circulation are key for keeping powdery mildew and other fungus diseases at bay. In hot and humid areas where the condition is likely to develop, the application of fungicides is suggested. Captan or a copper based fungicide such as Soap Shield from Gardens Alive may be helpful to apply before you see signs of the disease.

Be sure to check out the helpful information on our website, including other uses for the ProPlugger including:

  1. Bulb Planter
  2. Lawn Plugger
  3. Weeding tool
  4. Ground cover planter

Neil Moran is a horticulturist and author of three books on gardening. He is also the creator and author of the garden blog North Country Gardening