Explore Plants

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 

Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Tuesday - May 19, 2009

From: Denton, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Non-Natives
Title: Problems with non-native impatiens in Denton, TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, 4 weeks ago I planted a shady bed (2'x10') with impatiens for the third year in-a-row. Previously, the plants thrived & bloomed till November. Three weeks ago, something that looked like a thin layer of white salt appeared on the leaves and stems of 2 of the plants. We've had, at least, 2-3 days of rain a week since then. After each rain, the "salt" appeared on another 2-3 plants and now has spread the length of the bed, including on my large purple wandering jew (and on the leaf mulch surrounding the plants). After the "salt" is wet it looks like brown sand with 2 tiny "antennae." It doesn't cover each plant, just about a third, and, so far, hasn't affected blooming or growth. I am most concerned about it spreading to the rest of my garden, separated by a 2' sidewalk.

ANSWER:

The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is committed to the care, protection and propagation of plants native not only to North America but to the area in which the plant is being grown. Since Impatiens wallerana is native to Africa, from Tanzania to Mozambique, it will not appear in our Native Plant Database. We found an excellent website from the University of California Integrated Pest Management site on Pests in Gardens and Landscapes: Impatiens wallerana. On the upper right hand side of this webpage are two columns of links to "Invertebrates" (bugs) and "Diseases". Follow each of those links, all of which have pictures that will help you identify your problem. There are also suggestions for treatment. 

 

More Non-Natives Questions

Why are there gnats in my houseplants?
July 22, 2009 - I have flying brown gnats in my house plants. Can you tell me why?
view the full question and answer

Ground cover for Central California from Concord CA
July 19, 2012 - I live in a part of California where the summers can be very hot and dry but quite cool and wet during the rainy seasons in the wintertime. The soil around my home is very dry, rocky and infertile. I...
view the full question and answer

Identification of bushes with red berries in Tennessee
January 31, 2012 - I was recently traveling thru Clarksville, TN and saw these bushes (at the shopping mall) that had clusters of small red berries on them. They were not a Holly that I know of. The leaves were not th...
view the full question and answer

Interaction of Habiturf and St. Augustine grasses from Willow City TX
April 16, 2012 - How does Habiturf and St. Augustine interact? Does one dominate the other? Can you plant them in close areas? Thank you.
view the full question and answer

Growing conditions for non-native Thlaspi caerulescens
June 19, 2007 - I want to know what is the best condition for growing Thlaspi caerulescens and what is its life span. Thanks
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.