Silly question from newbie...

sapnamalik(z9 Islamabad)February 14, 2004

ok - i know nothing about impatiens but am considering getting some as i have hanging baskets in the shaded area of my house. impatiens are annuals arent they? how would the cutting thing work then? when would u take the cuttings?

the plant that my nurseryman showed me when i asked for impatiens had a few flowers (that certainly looked like impatiens flowers i've seen on the net), and the stems were kinda elastic and translucent type - and fleshy.

just wondering if thats the impatiens i should be getting - he said it wasnt an annual though.

any ideas?

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raul_in_mexico

Depending on the climatic zone they´re anual or perennial, the easist kind of impatiens are the common impatiens, available practically in every color of the rainbow, they tolerate from full sun ( with the proper watering ) to full shade, they can very easily be propagated by seed or by cuttings. As the seasons progress they need to be trimmed to aboult a half to keep them brushy since they can very easily become leggy. They are heavy drinkers in warm zones and sometimes they need watering 2 times a day if they´re exposed to full sun.

    Bookmark   February 14, 2004 at 1:00PM
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shrubs_n_bulbs(z8/9 UK)

Impatiens are tender perennials, they live for many years, but are rapidly killed by frost. Your description of the translucent fleshy stems sounds just right, the flowers would be pinkish or white, you've obviously seen lots of pictures of those.

Since they are killed by frost, they are often treated as annuals and discarded at the end of the summer. Sometimes they are potted and kept inside over the winter. They are also grown as houseplants since they flower well without direct sunlight. You can take cuttings before the first frost and grow the cuttings indoors until spring, so that you have lots of plants for the next year. Cuttings are very easy.

I am concerned about how they will fare in the heat of your summer. They may just wilt away and die, even in the shade. They love high humidity but not excessively high temperatures.

    Bookmark   February 16, 2004 at 9:52AM
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raul_in_mexico

No shrubs-n-bulbs, they do survive full sun exposure and 40°C of temperature, that´s what we get here in the spring, they have to be watered twice a day, but they do survive.

    Bookmark   February 16, 2004 at 5:21PM
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kdjoergensen

If you have access to an existing plant (like your nursery supplier) cut a few of the fleshy stems off, remove the flowers, and put them in a jar of water. Change the water twice per week and in 7-10 days roots will form at the base of the stem. When the roots are about 2" long, repot in a well draining soil mixture (e.g. into a flower pot) and enclose the pot in a plastic bag for increased humidity for a few days until the cutting recovers.

Then remove the plastic bag and the cutting should grow and flower in 4-6 weeks later. You can then cut more stems of your newly rooted cutting and root these, and the cut more cuttings and root more plants... how many do you need ???

Impatiens root very easily in water, if you keep the temperature around 70-75 deg F (indoors) in subdued light (no direct sunlight) and change water frequently.

Once roots form, pot into a pot with well draining soil, but then enclose the pot in a plastic bag for a few days because the cutting is likely to be stressed by the repotting.

You can also start impatiens from seed (very easy).

    Bookmark   February 17, 2004 at 5:47PM
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sapnamalik(z9 Islamabad)

Thanks for the help!!! I just went and bought a really leggy impatiens plant today. i've already taken a few cuttings and put them in water bottles and placed them in a location with very little light (indirect).
I hope they root!!!:)
Please keep up the advice - i'm learning new things everyday!

    Bookmark   February 18, 2004 at 6:24AM
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kdjoergensen

great job.. keep changing the water every few days to avoid harmfull bacterias building up. You should not fertilize for the moment either...

    Bookmark   February 18, 2004 at 4:38PM
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sapnamalik(z9 Islamabad)

ok... the cuttings i put in water have rooted - and the roots are long enough for me to pot them up... :)
only worry is... the original plant (the one i took all the cuttings from) hasnt flowered in all the time i've had it!!!!!!!
i want flowersss...

    Bookmark   March 7, 2004 at 11:16AM
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shrubs_n_bulbs(z8/9 UK)

Its still winter, right? Your original plant may not be getting enough light to flower, or it may be a bit cold. Also, 3 weeks from cutting stems isn't really long enough for those stems, or new side-stems, to start flowering.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2004 at 9:53AM
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CCChad(NSW Aust)

Raul from Mexico, I'd like to know what your impatiens look like, the ones you keep in full sun ? Are they very small and stunted? Are the leaves very tiny,and scorch easily? And what are the flowers like ?
I tried that once,but I ended up moving it into shade,and it picked up.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2004 at 8:05PM
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