Using impatiens walleriana this year?

If you planted Impatiens walleriana last year and they went from spectacular to distressed and ultimately failed, they were likely plagued by a foliar fungus known as Downy Mildew.  When affected, the leaves of the plant will first turn a spotted yellow color (photo 1).  Some leaves will have a grey veining on the top of the leaf.  Most often, a layer of downy-like white spores will present on the underside of the leaf (photo 2).  If untreated, the fungus will decimate the impatiens leaving behind branching with small yellow leaves (photo 3).

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Using fungicides preventatively is recommended if you choose to use this plant in your garden; even if you didn’t see failure last season.  Before buying a fungicide please look at the label to see that it will control Downy Mildew.  It is imperative that you follow the directions and guidelines on the label for fungus control.  Early detection can help save your impatiens so make sure you are out in the garden often  Lastly, do not place infected plants into the compost pile.

 

If the risk is too great, give us a call to help or talk to the folks at your local garden center for their recommended substitutes that will meet the specific needs of your garden. 

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