A reminder about Impatiens Downy Mildew
I thought that it might be time (or past time) to remind everyone about the deadly and internationally ubiquitous disease that is wiping out plantings and baskets of Impatiens everywhere.
Downy mildew is a common disease on many kinds of plants but this strain is specific to Impatiens walleriana hybrids. The spores are spread by wind, rain, plant to plant contact, splattering of water, humans, etc. There is no cure.
It can be prevented by two measures : early and frequent chemical intervention using a variety of fungicides OR not planting Impatiens walleriana at all until we start seeing new introductions proclaiming resistance. That day is probably not far off....heavy duty research has been on going for years all over the world. This is a billionS dollar business....research dollars are not scarce.
The 'Sunpatiens' hybrids appear to be highly resistant but require more sunlight than the shade loving walleriana. New Guinea impatiens are also unaffected...but need lots of sunlight.
Many of us have discussed this problem at length in the past. We've come up with some very interesting substitutions for shady locations. This isn't a new problem, it's just more widespread.
So, be a smart consumer.