Impatiens balfourii – Flowering plants

Impatiens balfourii is an annual herbaceous plant that grows up to 6-47 inches tall. Its stem is fleshy, reddish, lined, and very branched. It has oval to lance-shaped, alternately arranged toothed, stalked leaves. The inflorescence is a raceme generally bearing four to eight flowers. Each flower is about 2 cm long, with one of its white sepals forming a long, thin spur, and two of its yellow-dotted lavender or pink petals extending from the mouth. The fruit is linear to subclavate, glabrous, loculicidal with the valves dehiscing
elastically and coiling.

Scientific classification

Family: Balsaminaceae
Genus: Impatiens
Species: I. Impatiens balfourii
Scientific Name: Impatiens balfourii Hook.f.
Common Name: Balfour’s touch-me-not, Kashmir balsam, poor man’s orchid.
Synonyms: Impatiens balfouri, Impatiens mathildae, Impatiens insignis, Impatiens insubrica.

How to grow and care for Impatiens balfourii


It thrives best in bright indirect sunlight to partial shade. In an area with very hot summers, plant them in partial shade, or shade them from the afternoon sun. An excessive amount of sun may cause browning of foliage, though a lot of shade may make the balsam plant leggy and flowerless.


It grows well in an evenly moist, organically rich, well-drained, peat moss-based potting mix.


Water regularly, Keep the soil evenly moist but not soggy. Flowering plants are thirsty, and they dry out quickly in containers, so check them often. Impatiens will quickly wilt if they are allowed to dry out.


It prefers average room temperatures 60°F – 75°F / 16°C – 24°C. In winter do not let the temperature fall below 13°C (55°F).


Fertilize every two weeks from spring through fall with a high-potassium liquid fertilizer diluted by half.


It can be easily propagated by seed or stem cuttings. Sow impatiens seeds in spring or early summer. Germination takes 10 to 20 days. Take 10 cm stem tip cuttings in spring or summer.

Pests and Diseases:

Impatiens balfourii are susceptible to Spider mites, flower thrips, root-knot nematode, whiteflies, and aphids, especially under glass. Caterpillars outdoors. Gray mold, impatiens necrotic spot virus, fungal leaf spots, Rhizoctonia stem rot, Pseudomonas leaf spot, and Verticillium Wilt. If insect or disease problems occur, treat early with organic or chemical insect repellents and fungicide.

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