Rose balsam is a close cousin to the bedding impatiens one may be familiar with in container gardens. The flowers are cup shaped in colors that include red, pink, purple, and white. They also can be single or double in nature when it comes to petal arrangement. The blooms themselves can be found on the end of the stems, which can grow from one foot to two and half feet.
When it comes to using this annual, make sure that you place your plants in light shade to full sun in cooler climates. In areas that have hot summers, pick shady areas for placement.
While this plant looks beautiful filling a flowerbed, it can also be used in a landscape design as a middle plant in a border.
Propagating the rose balsam is through seed. To begin this process, one will need to count back four to six weeks prior to your local frost free date. The date you come up with is the soonest you can plant your seed. But prior to pulling out the seed packet, you will need to prepare the container.
The first step in this process is to clean and sterilize the pot or flat. While you may decide to skip this step since this flower is an annual, do not. It does not take that much time and if you are going to start seeds why not do it correctly.
Container sterilization is easy. Simply fill a basin with water and a capful of bleach. Place your container in the water and soak for a few minutes. Remove and soil or hard water stains. Rinse in clear water. When it comes to drying the container, just let it sit in the sun. This exposure to sunlight will sterilize the container even more.
Once the container is dry, fill with a dampened all purpose potting soil mix. Gently tap the container on a hard surface to settle the soil and remove any air pockets. Now, you are ready to plant your seeds.
Rose balsam seeds are small. In doing so, you only need to sprinkle the seeds on the soil surface and top them with a dusting of soil. After all the seeds have been planted, mist the soil with water and cover with clear plastic wrap. Place in a warm location away from direct sunlight.
In 8 to 10 days, you should begin to see little green dots of growth. This is an indication that your seeds have germinated. Once that has happened, remove the plastic wrap. Monitor the soil moisture and water when needed.
A week prior to your local frost free date, harden off your seedlings by gradually exposing them to the outdoor environment. Only after they have been outside for 24 hours should you plant them in the garden.