Impatiens Transplants Struggling in Poor Soil and Sun - Knowledgebase Question

Philadelphia, PA
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Question by tbwhite
May 25, 1998
I moved into a new home and thought I had a great area for planting some impatiens. When I went to plant them I found that the mulch that was in the flower bed was several inches thick and below that the soil seemed to be clay. So, the impatiens are basically planted in the mulch. Also, it turns out the area gets more sun than I thought(from roughly 1pm to 4pm there is direct sun). The impatiens have been in the ground for two weeks and are struggling. I haven't really noticed any new growth, and there is some yellowing and dropping of leaves. What, if anything, can I do to help these plants thrive ?

Answer from NGA
May 25, 1998
It's a tough situation for your impatiens! If you're set on impatiens, I suggest that you remove the plants, mix bagged topsoil or compost into the top couple inches of soil, replant the impatiens in the soil, and replace the mulch. Provide shade for the plants for a week or so while they get settled in and start showing new growth. Alternately, you can grow some different annuals that can take the heat and sun, such as coreopsis or daisies, or interplant so the other annuals will provide some shade for the impatiens. I hope this helps!

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