Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Sowing Impatiens

Impatiens are one of my favorite shade annuals. I plant them every year in the front flower garden, which is the only spot on my property with shade. Last year I grew many of my own Impatiens from seed,( including the one pictured above), using my indoor growing system.

In the fall, while cleaning up the flower bed, I noticed the plump seed pods on the Impatiens. I picked one off and was startled as it exploded in my hand.

Since I was playing around with the exploding seed pods anyway, I decided to collect a few seeds to see if I could grow them from the parent plant.

Last year I started the Impatiens on February 27. They were still small and not blooming by the last frost date, in fact only a few even had buds. I made a note that they could be started earlier. Since I'm a little antsy on this dreadful, foggy and rainy day, I decided to garden indoors a little and start the Impatiens seeds I collected along with a package of seeds I purchased several days ago. On that April 28, post, I also noted that the Impatiens didn't like to be transplanted and the ones that did best for me were the ones that grew and remained in the Jiffy pellets.

So, that is what these seeds were planted in today. My container of choice is an aluminum foil covered cake pan. I purchased several of these last year at Aldi's after Christmas on clearance. I soaked the pellets in warm water and let them get completely wet. The warm water also helps to increase the humidity level, which is important for germinating Impatiens.

I sowed several seeds to a pellet, pressed the seeds in place, but left them uncovered since they also need light to germinate.
I placed the lid on top and put the container on the growing system shelf. Hopefully in as few as 7 days or as many as 30, they'll germinate.


Frances said...

I like your cake pan with lid idea, very practical. I love the way those impatiens throw their seeds at you, goggles are needed however to avoid an 'eyeful'.

Frances at Faire Garden

jodi said...

If you like impatiens, go look at Graham Rice's blog; he's just written in the last day or so about a blue impatiens. Maybe not available here in North America yet, but what a beauty!

live4evermom said...

Would love to see your flowers as they grow. We started our seeds indoors too. We'll be planting outdoors soon.

Kylee said...

I almost bought impatiens seeds to try, but didn't when I saw how long it takes for them to bloom from seed. Don't you love those explode-a-pop seed pods? I did a blog post on balsam earlier last year. Same family. Too fun!

Yolanda Elizabet said...

Good luck with your Impatience and don't get impatient if they don't come up straight away. ;-) I also sow some things earlier than is described on the seed packet and have had lots of success that way.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

An ingenius little green house Robin. I bet your impatients will grow. I sometimes have volunteers around the garden. It is such fun to find them.

Can't wait to watch as your impatients grow.

Mary said...

I hope the best for you, Robin. You really know what you are doing!

In one of the photos they look like glazed chocolate donuts.

Anonymous said...


What kind of warm and cool lights did you buy? I want to set up a similiar greenhouse, but am unsure which lights to buy. Don't want to spend a fortune @ a seed company or nursery.


Robin's Nesting Place said...

Anonymous, I bought some of the lights at Walmart and some at the hardware stores. They say specifically if they are cool or warm on the package. I use one of each in my fixtures.