In Love with Busy Lizzie


I love impatiens, I really do. They are a workhorse for the shade garden. They also go by the lovely name of patience and my personal favorite: busy lizzies. For the folks that insist on the latin they are Impatiens Wallerana.

It’s true that a lot of gardeners turn up their noses at this rather simple  flower. They aren’t fancy or exotic and many think them rather plain. Those that use them to provide color in shady areas tend to be apologetic, as if embarrassed to be seen with them.


Why do I enjoy them so much? I keep two large window boxes on either side of my front steps. With two mature maple trees on either side of the front yard, I get a full day of shade. I’ve tried all sorts of shade plants for these boxes, but still end up coming back to impatiens. 


Look how wonderful they fill in all the gaps and create a lovely mounding shape. They come in all sorts of colors, are inexpensive, bloom strongly all summer until frost and best of all, I don’t have to deadhead. They look good in containers or in the ground. Really, what more can you ask for when trying to add color to the shade garden?

No fuss, no muss.



About Jill-O

a girl who likes lakes, trees and critters; making an attempt at living the artistic life.
This entry was posted in container gardening, flowers, gardening, shade gardening and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to In Love with Busy Lizzie

  1. lynnsgarden says:

    WOW, that first photo is amazing! I love impatiens too! My favorite color combo is the coral and purple! Bold and kinda clashing but they look great together! I love your window box..great job there!! It’s early but i’ts already raining here..again!

  2. Joy says:

    Jill girl ! I love these too … especially the newer cultivars with dark viened foliage and impossible flower colours .. I missed not having some this year ..but I willl plan on some for next year for certain !!
    I should start making actual notes in an actual garden notebook by NOW ! 😉

  3. jellyfishbay says:

    Lynn, ooh coral and purple sound great together. The last two years I’ve gone with red and white ’cause they look so good when I hang the U.S. flag above the boxes.

    Joy, everytime I read of some plant that I feel I must have, I add it to a list I keep in my word documents. It’s gotten very long.

  4. tina says:

    I’m in love with them too. They are so awesome in your first photo.

  5. keewee says:

    I am a huge fan of the lovely little flowers, as they are so easy to grow and reward me with plenty of color throughout the season.

  6. Catherine says:

    I love impatiens for many reasons, one being they bloom forever here. Yours look great, mine never get quite that full looking.

  7. RobinL says:

    I’m with you Jill, I love impatiens in my shady areas, but I do tend to make excuses for their use. Seriously, I shouldn’t do that! They are practically perfect. The only thing that would improve them is if they were fragrant.

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