Houseplants forum: Busy Lizzy

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Jayne76
Jul 10, 2017 3:00 PM CST
Any plant experts who can help me please? This is my busy lizzy I've had since a child (I'm now 41) it's never been like this before I have 2 and both are the same 😥
Thumb of 2017-07-10/Jayne76/40b157

Name: Vicki
North Carolina
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vic
Jul 10, 2017 3:05 PM CST
I'm not an expert but wondering if maybe you should cut it back and change the soil?

Jayne76
Jul 10, 2017 3:09 PM CST
vic said:I'm not an expert but wondering if maybe you should cut it back and change the soil?


I did get some new soil and scrapped the top layer off and refilled. I've fed with baby bio too, they have been in this size pot for decades I can't understand why all of a sudden this is happening.
Name: Vicki
North Carolina
Forum moderator Charter ATP Member I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar I sent a postcard to Randy! I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: United States of America
Purslane Garden Art Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Garden Ideas: Master Level Region: North Carolina Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
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vic
Jul 10, 2017 3:36 PM CST
I hope someone has an answer. I'd hate for you to lose this plant after so many years Crying

Jayne76
Jul 10, 2017 3:51 PM CST
vic said:I hope someone has an answer. I'd hate for you to lose this plant after so many years Crying


Thank you, I hope so too.
Name: Will Creed
NYC
Professional indoor plant consultan
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WillC
Jul 10, 2017 6:49 PM CST
It is hard to tell from this photo, but the stems of your Impatiens appear to be an odd dark color rather than a healthy green. In addition, there is some kind of infestation causing the whiteness on the small leaf.

Impatiens are difficult when kept as perennials indoors, although it can be done. Indoors they do require lots of direct sunlight, cool temps and they tend to defoliate in the winter. I suspect that the roots are in poor shape, most likely from keeping the soil too wet.

Prune back the stems to about 1-2 inches in height. The stem tissue should be firm and succulent when you cut them. If not, then the plant may be too far gone to make it. After pruning, move it to a sunny windowsill and allow the top inch of soil to dry before watering. Repotting and fertilizing will not help and may further aggravate the problem.

It may be that your Impatiens is simply dying of old age. You have somehow managed to keep it alive indoors for a very long time and that is remarkable!
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
www.HorticulturalHelp.com
I now have a book available on indoor plant care

Jayne76
Jul 11, 2017 3:57 AM CST
WillC said:It is hard to tell from this photo, but the stems of your Impatiens appear to be an odd dark color rather than a healthy green. In addition, there is some kind of infestation causing the whiteness on the small leaf.

Impatiens are difficult when kept as perennials indoors, although it can be done. Indoors they do require lots of direct sunlight, cool temps and they tend to defoliate in the winter. I suspect that the roots are in poor shape, most likely from keeping the soil too wet.

Prune back the stems to about 1-2 inches in height. The stem tissue should be firm and succulent when you cut them. If not, then the plant may be too far gone to make it. After pruning, move it to a sunny windowsill and allow the top inch of soil to dry before watering. Repotting and fertilizing will not help and may further aggravate the problem.

It may be that your Impatiens is simply dying of old age. You have somehow managed to keep it alive indoors for a very long time and that is remarkable!


Thank you for the advice, yes I've had them for a very long time and they live on my window sill so they get plenty of light. How often do you suggest I water them? As after a week in the warmer weather the leaves start to wither and once I have given them water they pick up.
Name: Will Creed
NYC
Professional indoor plant consultan
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WillC
Jul 14, 2017 2:12 PM CST
Jayne - If the foliage revives after watering, then that means you are waiting a bit too long before watering. I can't tell you how often to water as that depends on the health of the root system, the soil quality, temperature, humidity, amount of water applied and light. I suggest providing just enough water to prevent any wilting for a week. You may need to experiment a bit to determine the right amount.
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
www.HorticulturalHelp.com
I now have a book available on indoor plant care

Jayne76
Jul 15, 2017 4:48 AM CST
WillC said:Jayne - If the foliage revives after watering, then that means you are waiting a bit too long before watering. I can't tell you how often to water as that depends on the health of the root system, the soil quality, temperature, humidity, amount of water applied and light. I suggest providing just enough water to prevent any wilting for a week. You may need to experiment a bit to determine the right amount.


Ok thanks, I've cut them back so I shall just have to wait now.
Name: Zack
Upstate NY (Zone 5b)
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TheWitchBoy
Jul 18, 2017 8:20 PM CST
Impatiens are extremely easy to root in water (so easy that I had three in one wee jar that grew so fast that their roots actually knotted together! that was interesting to untangle, haha), I might suggest, as a side precaution, that you take a cutting (something young and healthy looking) and stick it in water on your sill, just in case -- or to have another "Busy Lizzy" around the house.

The ease of rooting is, quite literally, the only thing I know about impatiens, since I took a few cuttings of my grandmother's very large impatiens on a whim/to experiment with.

I hope you're able to revive your plant! Best of luck! Hurray!
"Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think." - A. A. Milne

Jayne76
Jul 21, 2017 7:07 AM CST
TheWitchBoy said:Impatiens are extremely easy to root in water (so easy that I had three in one wee jar that grew so fast that their roots actually knotted together! that was interesting to untangle, haha), I might suggest, as a side precaution, that you take a cutting (something young and healthy looking) and stick it in water on your sill, just in case -- or to have another "Busy Lizzy" around the house.

The ease of rooting is, quite literally, the only thing I know about impatiens, since I took a few cuttings of my grandmother's very large impatiens on a whim/to experiment with.

I hope you're able to revive your plant! Best of luck! Hurray!


Thanks for the info, I have put a couple of cuttings in a smaller pot and the ones that I cut back, one of them has a bit of new growth so it's just a waiting game now to see it the sprout healthy leaves.
Name: Vicki
North Carolina
Forum moderator Charter ATP Member I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar I sent a postcard to Randy! I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: United States of America
Purslane Garden Art Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Garden Ideas: Master Level Region: North Carolina Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
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vic
Jul 21, 2017 8:10 AM CST
Yay on the new growth Thumbs up Hope you see healthy leaves soon.
Name: Zack
Upstate NY (Zone 5b)
Foliage Fan Container Gardener Houseplants Cat Lover Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Garden Photography
Region: New York
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TheWitchBoy
Jul 22, 2017 8:35 PM CST
Here's to a successful Busy Lizzy resuscitation! Crossing Fingers! @Jayne76
"Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think." - A. A. Milne

Jayne176
May 23, 2018 3:52 AM CST
Hi, just wanted to say thanks for all the advice and post an update. (I had to create a new account, wouldn't let me log in to old one). Here is a current picture of my plants, there are still a couple of speckled leaves but the majority look healthy. Thanks again....
Thumb of 2018-05-23/Jayne176/f27ae2

[Last edited by Jayne176 - May 23, 2018 9:00 AM (+)]
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Name: Christine
Saugerties, NY zone 5a
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Christine
May 23, 2018 5:41 AM CST
They look great, you did a good job Thumbs up
Name: Cinda
Indiana Zone 5b
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gardengus
May 23, 2018 5:57 AM CST
Hurray!

a good plant mom Thumbs up
Keep believing ,hoping,and loving
all else is just existing.
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Hamwild
May 23, 2018 8:56 AM CST
Wow, what a difference!
Name: Will Creed
NYC
Professional indoor plant consultan
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WillC
May 23, 2018 2:56 PM CST
Looking good! I cannot see the "speckling" in the photos, but speckling or mottling of Impatiens leaves is often a sign or spider mites and Impatiens are one of their favorite hosts. Check carefully for the mites before they get out of control. I hope the speckling is something else altogether.
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
www.HorticulturalHelp.com
I now have a book available on indoor plant care

Jayne176
May 23, 2018 4:03 PM CST
WillC said:Looking good! I cannot see the "speckling" in the photos, but speckling or mottling of Impatiens leaves is often a sign or spider mites and Impatiens are one of their favorite hosts. Check carefully for the mites before they get out of control. I hope the speckling is something else altogether.


I think it's just the old leaves left, only the bigger one has them on which is one of the original plants I had.
Name: Will Creed
NYC
Professional indoor plant consultan
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WillC
May 23, 2018 7:24 PM CST
Thumbs up
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
www.HorticulturalHelp.com
I now have a book available on indoor plant care

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