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Overwintering and leaf drop.

Posted by amccour z5 (My Page) on
Mon, Oct 27, 08 at 20:17

It's too cold here for perennial impatiens to survive the winter, so I have to bring them indoors. They do alright but there's lots of leaf yellowing and drop, I'm assuming from lowered light. In the summer, I move it back outdoors, and pinch off whatever branches are getting too bare and leggy and not leafing back up. Is there anything I can do to keep it looking better indoors, or to reduce the risk of it going too much into decline?

Some notes: Humidity is pretty high. They probably get a bit colder than they'd like as I have to keep them next to a window for the light, although it's not really all that cold until January and February. I try to keep them a bit on the dryer side as they're not growing all that fast and I don't want any rot.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Overwintering and leaf drop.

I dont know what else to tell you. One of the things that Imps do in the house is get leggy. It is a bit of a shock to them but they should adjust but dont expect them to look the way they do outside. They like the shade but living in a house is like a cave to them. Just keep them alive long enough to get them back outside in the spring.

RE: Overwintering and leaf drop.

Alright. Other than being leggy, it doesn't look particularly bad or anything. It's actually blooming again. Should I pinch it back at all indoors, or just wait till it goes back outside?

Also, the leaves are forming these weird, clear, sugar-like droplets on them. It looks like guttation but that should just be water. They don't seem to be coming from any pests, either.

RE: Overwintering and leaf drop.

When I was a girl, Mom had the most amazing impatiens plant that was a houseplant--or should I say, a housebush? It was in an old 5-gallon creamer pot, and all she ever did was water it and leave it in a south-facing window and it was always blooming. It wasn't until years later when I saw impatiens used outdoors, and they were low-lying (compared to Mom's 12-16" stalks) so I almost didn't recognize them.
However, I will say that when the sugar-droples formed, it was invariably due to spider mites, especially during the dryer months of winter. They were hard to see, but they were present, and one year they took over the entire "garden" of plants in the south-facing window. Keep an eye out for the little buggers!

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