Impatiens Struggle in Texas Summers
If you have impatiens whose leaves are rolling and whose flowering has slackened, welcome to summer. It’s their typical reaction to temperatures above 90 degrees, and it’s precisely why they’re best suited in Texas to spaces that have early morning sun, then shade most of the balance of the day.
Few plants have had more breeding attention in the past 30 years than impatiens. In fact, you’d hardly recognize the original types we first grew in our gardens back in the 60s. They grew to 24 to 30 inches tall, and they produced perhaps 20 percent as many flowers as the modern, dwarf hybrid types. Some of the new hybrid selections do show good promise in blooming more heavily in mid-summer, but many do not.
If you have impatiens that have begun to pout, mulch them and keep them moist. Apply a diluted, water-soluble fertilizer every third time that you water them. Watch for spider mite damage (tiny tan mottling on the leaves), and use a labeled insecticide to eliminate them if they do show up. If your plants are in pots, move them into a shaded location. They won’t bloom very heavily, but they’ll hold their own until fall. When the cooler weather returns, so will your handsome plants.