The Q&A Archives: Impatiens

Question: I received a large impatient for a gift. It is too large to keep as a houseplant, and I would like to plant it outside. Can you please tell me where would be a good place to plant it and how much watering it would need. I by no means am a gardner but want to keep the plant alive and I have quite a busy garden in a new house I just bought. The temperature is pretty moderate year round and I have both full sun spots as well as shady spots.

Answer: Based on your description, I think you have New Guinea Impatiens. These are perennials in your gardening region. There are a number of species, either upright or spreading, usually with large leaves, often variegated with cream or red. The flower colors range from lavender, purple, pink, red, and orange. All grow well in moist soil with some exposure to sunshine (shade from hottest afternoon sun), ample moisture and regular feeding. For bet performance, water before the soil becomes dry, and feed every 3-4 weeks with a diluted liquid fertilizer.

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