Patiently waiting impatiens

There are few things as satisfying in life than successfully taking cuttings from plants.  Sowing seeds  probably probably has the edge as that involves an element of magic; seeing that first shoot is always a moment of amazement to me.  Cuttings feel slightly less magicky (that is a word, promise) but, very importantly,  they do provide plants for free.  With my plant-habits, plants for free are three of my favourite words.

You may remember around a month ago, I went to the Plant Fair at Felley Priory.  Much fun was had and I bought a rather nice Impatiens sodenii.  You may also recall a reported conversation about how easy it was to take cuttings from.  So I chose a couple of nice shoots, snipped and popped them into a glass of water.  I did the same from my Impatiens tinctoria, which I have had for a few years now and it seemed sensible to take some contingency cuttings from it so I do not lose it over the winter.
The roots started to appear within a couple of weeks, and after four weeks there were enough for me to plant them on.
Two of each, nice rooted.
Looking healthy and green, (sodenii)
and I pinched the tip out of this one to see if it would bush out nicely. (tinctoria).

I have been told via twitter conversations that rooting in water is 'not what proper gardeners do'.  Now I have never made any claim to be a proper anything never mind a proper gardener, so this is hardly going to bother me.  Also what is a 'proper gardener'?  Is it not someone who enjoys gardening and sometimes gets things to root?  I am not sure I want to be proper, give me improper any day!  So here I stand, proud and tall (well actually a bit short really, but shush) waving my flag for the improper gardeners; long may our plants flourish.


  1. I too root my impatiens in water! Apparently the roots that grow in water aren't the roots that grow in soil, so the plant has to make some more roots, but i have always found it to be successful.

  2. From another improper gardener who accidentally rooted catmint in water, I'm waving that flag too!
    Best wishes

  3. Well, you may be aware that I wrote a book about Improper Gardening and of course we root things in water. Xxxx


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