Impatiens or Chinese balsam plants for gardens

Impatiens or Chinese balsam plants you can grow easily in gardens balconies or indoors. Definitely the plant can make our gardens colourful with beautiful bright blooms. In tropical places, we can use these perennials for pot planting, window boxes or even landscaping.

Impatiens or Chinese balsam plants ( Impatiens walleriana )

A short description

Chinese balsam plants with blooms in different colours

Impatiens walleriana, also known as busy lizzie, sultana, jewel weed etc. belongs to the family balsaminaceae. There are about 1000 species of impatiens plants, with flowers in a wide variety of colours. In tropical climates, the plant produces blooms throughout the year. Usually the flowers are seen with five petals, in small clusters or as single.

Certain hybrid varieties of the plants, are having flowers that are multi coloured.

The ripe fruits have the tendency to burst out, that helps the plant for the dispersal of seeds. Likewise the plants are available in different sizes, that suits fine for our requirements. For example the dwarf species with a maximum height of about five inches, is ideal for making boarders. Preferably in landscaping as well as for bedding in flower gardens.

Impatiens or Chinese balsam plants in home gardens

Impatiens plant with white flowers

Surely the impatiens can do well in places with indirect sunlight. Therefore, we can grow these plants underneath the ornamental trees in our gardens.

In a like manner, we can keep the impatiens in our balconies or window boxes. Preferably along with other indoor plants like spider plants, sansiveieria, aglaonema, ZZ plant, etc.

In addition, impatiens plants in full bloom, can make our gardens really awesome along with a few bonsai trees. Mainly such as the Ficus ginseng microcarpa, Ficus benjamina, the Fukien tea tree etc.

Above all, a landscape having boarder made with dwarf impatiens plants will look really fantastic. Especially those with blooms in mixed shades around the garden ponds or lush green lawns.

Fascinating facts behind different names of Impatiens or Chinese balsam plants.

Bright red flower of Impatiens plant

The Chinese balsam plants are known in different names, and the reasons for this are really interesting. For example:


The mature ripe fruits of the plant are waiting impatiently to open. Even a gentle touch, can make it burst abruptly. Hence in many parts of the world, people call them by the name impatiens.

Owing to the same reason as stated above, it is also known as the touch-me-not plant.

Busy lizzy plant:

Once the plant starts blooming, it remains absolutely busy producing flowers in abundance.

Medicinal properties

In certain places, people use the plant parts for the treatment of common ailments. For example, topical application of a paste made with the plant gives relief to itching and burning sensation. Preferably for insect bites, allergic irritation caused due to the contact with plants like the stinging nestle etc.

Propagation of Impatiens or Chinese balsam plants

Saplings of Impatiens from stem cuttings

Definitely we can use stem cuttings for the propagation of the impatiens. Seeds collected from mature fruits are equally good.

For a faster growth, it is always better to use the former method.

How to grow Impatiens or Chinese balsam plants

Impatiens or Chinese balsam plants
Impatiens plant with brown leaves

First collect stem cuttings with a length of about 4-6 inches. Remove leaves in the lower end, retaining at least two nodes. Then fill an ordinary pot or polythene grow bag with river sand.

After that, insert the lower tip of the cutting in it, about two inches deep.

Keep it in shade for a few days, and water on a regular basis. Always remember to ensure proper drainage for the pot.

Rooting starts within a period of two weeks and new buds begin to sprout. You can transplant your saplings, once it started growing well.

Growing medium for the plant

You can surely use a medium similar to that of succulents, with proper drainage. The tender stems as well as leaves of the plant have the tendency to rot faster.

A potting mixture with ingredients mixed in the given ratio is ideal.

  • River sand 25%
  • Dried cow dung or compost 25%
  • Garden soil 20%
  • Crushed bricks 15%
  • Coco peat 15%

Always remember to take necessary steps to prevent blockage of the drainage holes.


Definitely it is essential to water the plant regularly, for maintaining its beauty and health. A moist, but well drained medium is the most important requirement for your plant.

Never forget, that over watering can make the succulent like stems to rot in a faster way.

Besides, find suitable places for the plants during the rainy season. Especially if you keep it in an open space.

Fertiliser for Impatiens or Chinese balsam plants

For a proper growth and better blooming, feed the plant at intervals of two weeks. Preferably with a water soluble diluted fertiliser.

Light requirements

Usually the plant can do well either in full or partial shade. Besides, you can provide a filtered light up to a maximum of 60%, which is ideal for the impatiens.

Never keep the plants in direct sunlight, because it can cause scorching that may lead the plants to die.


The timely removal of flower heads, can make a faster growth of new flower buds. In addition, pruning helps the plants to retain its bushy nature.

For this, there is no need to use any particular tools. Because you can pinch off the fleshy plant parts easily.

Repotting Impatiens or Chinese balsam plants

Impatiens or Chinese balsam plants
Impatiens plants with bright pink flowers
Repotting is essential when your impatiens plants outgrow the container. Likewise the plant becomes leggy, if there is lack of sufficient nutrients in the growing medium.

For repotting, you can take the whole plant out of the pot along with the soil. Then carefully remove the extra roots using a sharp knife or scissors.

Finally repot the plant in a much larger container, filled with fresh potting mixture.

Keep the pot in shade, till the plant starts growing in the new medium.

Common problems

Wilting is the most commonly found problems that affect the impatiens. Over watering or lack of sufficient water are the possible reasons.

Also certain types of fungal or bacterial diseases may be found, preferably during the rainy seasons.

Undoubtedly it is one of most beautiful plants that can make your garden really awesome. Above all, you don’t need to take any extra effort for growing a few of them.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: