Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Losing my impatiens

My patio a month ago. Unfortunately I do not have a good picture showing how dense and beautiful my wall of impatiens were

Victims of downy mildew disease. All the flowers drop off and then the leaves. There is white fuzz on the underside of the few remaining leaves
Impatiens have been my go to plant. They are tolerant of shade and overwatering and quickly spread. A few small bedding plants quickly turn into huge balls of color. They don't need to be dead headed, just fertilized once in a while and watered.I always plant a flat in front and divide another flat or two into 5 bags and some planters. The one wall of my patio is shaded by the neighbors fast growing arborvitae. Although I have a few plants growing along the fence, the arborvitae roots have been making planting anything on that edge impossible so I need bags and planters.

Last year there was a warning not to buy impatiens because they could be diseased with downy mildew. Beautiful flats of flowers went unsold.   I bought a few flats for $3 apiece and had no problems. I didn't hear of any warnings this year and bought my impatiens in May. (impatiens are not frost tolerant). Even as late as two weeks ago, the impatiens were beautiful and healthy. Then leaves and flowers started falling. Maybe because it went to 35 degrees one night? Almost all of the ones in front are gone. My two huge planters in back are now filled with dead flowers and the fungus is starting to attack the bags. True in a few weeks, frost will come and they will be dead anyway. But this is worse because the fungus will presumably survive the winter. I can not plant in front any more with impatiens. I will need to replace all the soil in the bags and somehow sterilize them to kill the spores.

Since this attack seemed to be sudden and they were healthy all summer. I am assuming bees spread the fungus from somewhere else.

I am having a Happy Hour for the Moms on my patio this evening and am sad because it is no longer pretty. We were going to go out but it was hard agreeing to a place that fit our hours. My house is central to the others and I don't ever shut down.

My patience has been stretched thin this week. On Monday I fired off a scathing e-mail to anyone at Maya's school who could be responsible for this incompetence and annoyance of Maya's denial of a bus pass. At the very last minute, she was denied one because not all her medical records were complete. She had been told several times that everything was in order and by some small chance, it wasn't, they would let Naomi know in plenty of time. Naomi pleaded with them saying how hard it was to drive 50 miles a day with very little income but no, rules were rules. Meanwhile this school likes to think of themselves as some sort of life coach asking Naomi if she needs help with every aspect of her life (menu planning, resume writing, discipline tips, exercise routines, job searching, etc). I reiterated how stressful their policies were. If they are trying to help the families and the students, they most assuredly were NOT. And they lack compassion (and common sense).

When Naomi arrived at the school for the umpteenth time to deliver Maya, one of my addressees cornered Naomi and apologized for her part in this debacle but still the bus pass was not given until yesterday. Now we will see if they hired a bus driver that will go to the right stop, always a problem.

Steve refuses to be excited about the trip as he thinks it is interfering with the house hunting. I really, really wish I didn't get this started. Again I said that we will move but just not now.

But bright things are on the horizon. First the Moms tonight, tomorrow I'll see Shanna's kids, Friday I go to lunch with a good friend. Saturday, Allies's first birthday party. Tuesday back to ArtPrize in Grand Rapids with another friend. And the trip..still to be planned. And no rain or cold for a while.

Maya hopefully waiting for the bus. No word yet whether it came

1 comment:

Elephant's Child said...

I am glad you have some bright spots on the horizon.


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