The Q&A Archives: Impatiens

Question: I have several dozen impatiens growing in my yard. When and how do I collect the seeds so I can re-plant next year?

Answer: To be quite honest, it's nearly impossible to collect seed from impatiens growing outdoors in the garden. (Under greenhouse conditions it's much, much easier to isolate and collect the seedpods.) I've had really good luck in just allowing the impatiens to self-sow in my flower border. The seeds are shed throughout the growing season; when frost kills the parent plants off I pull them up, hold them upside and give them a shake over the soil, then toss the plants in the compost pile. Next spring I have volunteer impatiens plants which I dig and transplant if they're too close together. Best wishes with your garden!

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