Impatiens New Guinea is a perennial herbaceous plant but often cultivated as an annual, evergreen, up to 40 cm tall and up to 25 cm wide. Its leaves are lanceolate, simple or double, rich and abundant flowers that shine from April to October, white, pink, red or mottled. It is part of the Balsaminaceae family which includes only one other genus, not used as an ornamental plant. The Impatiens genus includes hundreds of species and many varieties including the New Guinea group.
The name of the botanical genus refers to the impatience 'of the seeds: just touch the ovary that contains them to make them splash out as if they were impatient to find ground to germinate. The name of the variety is linked to the area of origin of Impatiens hawkeri, as reported above.
A little attention is enough to grow this magnificent plant, it is very tolerant and hardy and will find a perfect place in your home. Taking care of them is very simple, they are generally 'self-cleaning' plants, they get rid of the withered petals and the foliage always remains compact and beautiful for many months. After purchase, the plant must be repotted as soon as possible in a container of one or two sizes more and you can combine several specimens in bowls or boxes. To get the best you need to be regular with watering, daily in summer for plants exposed to the sun. The soil must not dry out but it is good to avoid it remaining soaked in water for a long time. We advise you to fertilize your New Guinea every 7-10 days throughout its life, it is a plant that consumes a lot of energy to conserve flowering.
A layer of expanded clay marbles is needed at the bottom of the container to facilitate drainage and avoid water stagnation at the root level. Use a high quality potting soil such as for flowering plants.
Generally they are small plants, ideal for bowls and borders; they last a very long time in full bloom and not infrequently towards mid-summer, they form 'pillow' flower beds, large and very generous with flowers that only the autumn frost will stop.
It prefers to live outdoors, tolerates the sun well, preferably filtered, but also the bright shade.
It wants to be watered regularly: lack of water causes it to lose the effect of a flowery 'cushion'.
It likes temperatures above 18 ° C but in autumn it can often tolerate very cool temperatures and ends its life cycle with the first frosts.
Ideal in all conditions, for balconies and gardens, even in combination with other plants with the same needs, such as coleus, vinca, marigold, torenia, small ferns, it tolerates shade but also the sun and is not afraid of intense and sultry heat.
It is among the few plants that do not slow down flowering even in the hottest periods.
Problems and remedies:
The plant is weak and blooms little: too small pot, poor soil, little light. Repot with high quality potting soil, fertilize regularly, move in bright light or in the sun.
Gray mold at the base of the stems: too humid and sultry environment, move to a position with the sun (even only in the morning), treat with a fungicide.
Pale leaves, with very thin cobwebs underneath: red spider. Treat with an insecticide and create more humidity.
The Impatiens glandulifera species of Asian origin has spread almost everywhere in Europe, becoming a pest; in Italy it also grows on the Alps and Apennines up to 1200 m of altitude.
It expresses the ability and will to be self-sufficient and efficient in life and work; it is a symbol of intelligence.