Impatiens, also known as touch-me-nots, are incredibly popular flowers. They are bright and beautiful, and bring to life even the dullest of gardens. If you are planning on growing impatiens in your yard, you need to know how to properly care for them.
People like to refer to impatiens by a number of different names, such as snapweed, patience, jewelweed, and of course, touch-me-nots. While they are incredibly popular, you need to understand that proper care is required to grow the impatiens and make sure they bloom on time.
Most people usually buy the impatiens as properly rooted plants from their local nursery. They prefer buying the plant instead of growing it from scratch.
Growing the Impatiens
When you bring the flowers home, you need to make sure that you water them properly. Impatiens require quite a bit of water on a daily basis, especially until you put them into the ground.
These plants are incredibly sensitive to a lack of water, so you need to take that into account. They can be planted in containers, or you can put them around as border plants or even bedding plants.
Make sure the soil that you put them in remains moist, though it should not get waterlogged. On top of that, shade is very important for these plants. They don’t do so well in open sunlight, so you need to make sure that you provide them some shade.
Now that you have put your impatiens plants in the soil and done everything in the best possible manner, you need to wait for them to bloom. But, it can be incredibly frustrating when you do everything right, only to find that your impatiens don’t bloom at all.
Reasons Why Impatiens Won’t Bloom and How to Fix the Problems
There can be any number of reasons why your impatiens might not bloom. Here are a few reasons, and what you can do about them.
1 – Sun Exposure
Even though impatiens can brighten almost any part of the yard and make it look really colorful and beautiful, you need to understand that they require a moderate amount of sun. You already know that to grow the impatiens properly, you need to place them in partial shade.
However, most people just place their impatiens in dense shade, and that could prevent the impatiens from blooming altogether, or may only result in sporadic blossoms.
Ideally, areas that get the bright morning light and then put them in a bit of shade to prevent them from the harsh afternoon sun.
This is the best way to keep the plants blooming in a healthy manner with minimal hassle on your part.
2 – Soil and Placement
Now that you know the importance of dappled sunlight for your impatiens, it’s time to look at other factors. You need to look at the soil in which you have placed your impatiens.
Impatiens require a plant bed that provides efficient drainage. The flowers are going to do really well in rich, loam soils, especially those that don’t allow water to stand for long.
If you are going to put your impatiens in containers, you should place a layer of gravel at the bottom. This allows water to drain through conveniently.
More importantly, you need to add compost to the soil before you put the plants into it. This is going to improve the quality of the blooms too.
3 – Fertilizer
You need to understand that impatiens feed quite a bit, so throughout the growing season, you are going to need more and more fertilizer. This is necessary to keep the plants sated as they bloom throughout the season.
To produce healthy leaves and flowers, these plants require a lot of nitrogen. To bloom, the plants need large amounts of phosphorus.
So, to bloom the plants, you need to make sure that you choose a fertilizer that has equal parts of these nutrients. You can choose a fertilizer with a 10-10-10 label or you can choose a 13-13-13 label one.
More importantly, you need to apply the fertilizer regularly after every six to eight weeks. This needs to happen throughout the summer months and spring, so they will never starve.
4 – Watering the Plants
Proper irrigation is essential for the growth of these plants. While you need soil that allows water to drain through, you also need to understand that it requires regular irrigation.
The soil must never dry out completely. These plants are incapable of tolerating drought, so a regular supply of water is critical.
If that happens, the blooms will diminish or may not happen at all. You need to provide adequate amounts of water to the plants if you want them to bloom.
Every time you water, you should make sure that you provide at least enough to moisten the top layer of at least six inches. This is generally equivalent to an inch of rainfall.
To ensure that the soil remains moist, you should also mulch around the plant to keep the soil moist. Always start by watering at the base to keep the foliage and the flowers dry and prevent them from breaking off due to the force of the water.
Powdery mildew might start to develop on wet plants, so it’s best to prevent that from happening.
5 – Pruning
Overpruning is a big problem, and arguably one of the reasons why your plants may not bloom. Overpruning forces the plants to develop foliage along the stem, which is going to create dense and compact foliage.
Ultimately, this will prevent the plant from blooming. More importantly, if you aren’t particularly careful, you might end up cutting down the new buds that have formed already.
If you do this, the plants aren’t going to bloom at all. These are just a few things that you should know about your impatiens not blooming, and what you can do about it.
Make sure you take proper care of your plants if you want them to bloom during the season.
Growing up with a mom who filled her home (inside and out) with all sorts of plants, Lisa got her start in gardening at a young age. Living now on her own with a home and yard full of plants (including an indoor greenhouse), she shares all the gardening tips she’s gained over the years.