Guinea Impatiens Have Developed White Blobs On Stems After Being Brought Indoors

Question From: S. tompkins - East Hampton, New York, United States
Q: My 2 new guinea impatiens plants which were on the deck in pots during the summer (& doing well there) now are indoors since mid October. They both did well for a while but in the last few weeks have developed white round little blobs on the stems - then lately the leaves are discolored and drying up & the flowers are becoming wilted at a faster rate than normal. Is there any treatment to save them or do I just have to give up on them?

A: I believe your impatiens have mealy bugs. Swabing them with a Qtip dipped on alcohol will do them in. You must keep check the plants every few days as they are hard to get rid of. I know folks who toss plants when they get mealy bugs. Do keep them away from other house plants. Plants will drop leaves when you bring them in for the winter. They resent the change in the environment. Keep them watered so the soil stays moist, but do not over water them and do not fertilize them over the winter. In spring, cut them back. I know folks who have kept their impatiens alive for years. Just don't expect them to look like they did in the garden. Best And Happy Yardening, Nancy