From the Ground Up Blog

SunPatiens® – Why are they so darn popular?

When spring arrives and winter-weary garden shoppers are looking for a respite, they naturally gravitate towards the most colorful lush annuals they can lay their eyes on. New Guinea impatiens fits the bill with opulent tropical foliage covered with large showy color-soaked blooms. But most are only suitable for shade or partial sun…. that is until SunPatiens arrived on the scene over a decade ago. The series is bred by Sakata Seed in collaboration with the Indonesian Agency for Agricultural Research and Development (IAARD) using the breeding material of Indonesia’s native species of Impatiens.


SunPatiens can tolerate full sun far beyond that of most New Guinea varieties, in fact, they thrive on it! Plus, the thicker petals and tough foliage are less prone to disease, and their strong sturdy stems tolerate high heat and humidity, rain and adverse weather conditions. Plants are easy to grow for both growers and gardeners. Once the transplants take hold in containers, gardens, or landscapes they thrive and provide a palette of color from spring all the way through a hard frost.


So… in addition to lovin’ the sun, what makes SunPatiens so darn popular? Consider the following:

  • Saves production costs – Quicker turns than standard New Guinea’s; no PGR’s needed when grown as directed; best plant quality is when they’re grown cool, providing you energy savings.
  • Less product loss – These beauties are not susceptible to Downy Mildew. They will NOT be taken down!
  • Last and most significant – high-quality high impact plants have customers coming back year after year, asking for them by name.

This workhorse series is ideal for landscape professionals and home gardeners, and it is the only series available from all 5 of our liner grower specialists.


Two categories of SunPatiens fits all the garden market niches:  

Compact Sunpatiens Pink Red FlowersCompact SunPatiens are bred for strong retail appeal and a smaller habit. They offer the best habit for multi-pack, high-density production. Produce in 306’s, quarts, gallons, and hanging baskets for landscapes, containers, and hanging baskets. Fully finished compact varieties grow 16-30 in. tall and 14-20 in. wide and are available in 18 colors. Top 5 sellers in this group are Electric Orange, Fire Red, Royal Magenta, Tropical Rose (variegated foliage), and White.

Vigorous SunPatiens offer excellent branching with strong plant vigor. They are ideal for cooler regions and excel in landscapes or super large containers where plants need to quickly fill in space, and massive color is essential. Offer them to your customers in premium packs and 4-6 in. pots for transplanting. Vigorous varieties grow 18 – 34 in. tall and 16 – 21 in. wide and are available in 14 colors. Top 5 sellers in this group are Lavender, Pink Kiss, Red, Tropical Orange (variegated foliage), and White (variegated foliage).


Product Support

There aren’t many plant brands that are recognized by name by consumers. SunPatiens is one of the few, and while the popularity of the series is primarily due to the actual product itself, the support that accompanies the series plays a strong role in its value proposition. Growers can visit the Sakata Seeds website for resources that will help you produce and market the series. Also, be sure to visit the stand-alone Sunpatiens website for consumer-based information and guidance to promote your product to your customers! 


Where can you find SunPatiens?

Just to put a popular rumor to rest – SunPatiens are NOT available from seed! If you’re advised they are or you see SunPatiens seed available online, don’t believe it! SunPatiens varieties are produced from vegetative cuttings that are rooted by liner grower specialists. All of Harris Seeds liner grower partners offer this fantastic series, which is a strong testimony to their performance and demand.


If SunPatiens is not in your product line-up, there’s still time! Get in the game and order your rooted liners from any of our liner grower specialists. You won’t be disappointed, and neither will your customers!


Mar 15, 2021

Sunpatiens are great for hot, sunny spots. However they are thirsty plants, so they will need lots of water in full sun. Many gardeners add mulch around the plants to help keep the soil moist, and cooler throughout the day. In your climate of Arizona, they will definitely need a daily watering, more like a daily aggressive soaking, because of these needs. It may be worth growing the compact selections, as they are not as aggressive as the spreading types, and will not have as large and spreading of a root ball, they may be easier to keep up with the watering.

Harris Seeds
Mar 15, 2021

We live in Bullhead City, AZ. 8-10 hrs full sun, up to 120 in heart of summer. We currently plant your vinca and zinnia which we buy from you. We water everday and they thrive. Will the Sun Patiens thrive. I would LOVE to be able to plant these as well.

Aletha Hughes
Dec 29, 2020

SunPatiens are currently only available through our Plug & Liner program. Please feel free to download or request price lists here:

Harris Seeds
Dec 29, 2020

Would like to purchase multiple Plug Liners of Sun Patiens….. is that possible thru you

Ed Nick
Dec 29, 2020

Do you sell SunPatiens seeds?
I am looking to buy some.

Jon Furbush
Dec 29, 2020

A few years back I was able to get the sun patiens seed, after that I couldn’t find them, only the plants. I loved them and were perfect for my patio. Wondering if I will be able to get seeds for next year.

Thank you,

Debbie Henneke
Dec 29, 2020

If I can’t grow sunpatiens from seed how could I start my own plants. If I snip a plant can I start the roots in water and then transfer to soil?

Wendy lucier

Leave a comment