Pam H
by Pam H
Does it look like next year's impatiens will be infected again with a fungus?
  6 answers
  • Yes. It is not the nurseries that is spreading the disease. The disease is a mildew that is spread by spores which gets in the soil and is spread by animals, weather, and humans (easiest way to explain). Right now to rid any place of it involves sprays and chemicals which are not cheap and there are no guarantees because if the spores travel on the wildlife, you could end up with it back in your yard from the neighbor down the road because they did not treat for it. There are other plants you can use and other impatiens that you can replace to use. I know, it is not the same ( I love impatiens in my planters with my hostas) but hopefully mother nature will take care of this and we can have our impatiens back.

    • See 1 previous
    • @Pam H I know that for me my hostas in pots do not look as pretty without impatiens. I had a few this year and they did fine. There are other plants you could try for color and texture such as Caladiums, Rex begonia, or Angel wing begonia, Swedish ivy, or house plants that would otherwise need filtered or shade. For me, I do not follow any rule book for gardening~I follow my heart and my passion and it has not failed me yet. I have many things growing in my 1/4 acre suburban yard under might Oaks that should not be doing well. Gardening is about passion and if your heart is set on impatiens and you can get them, go for it. Just use clean pots and new soil. Happy gardening. and enjoy the beauty!

  • Douglas Hunt Douglas Hunt on Sep 18, 2013
    The good news is that the disease seems to have been less widespread this year than last. The bad news is that it now seems to be affecting balsam as well. Impatiens downy mildew is going to be a fact of life for gardeners for some time in the future.

  • Stephen Andrew Stephen Andrew on Sep 18, 2013
    I think the New Guinea impatiens are far less susceptible though.

  • Pam H Pam H on Sep 18, 2013
    Is it bad enough to not plant them next spring? I do mass planting of impatiens and would hate to lose them!

  • Linda Smith Linda Smith on Sep 21, 2013
    I just learned of this problem a month ago; we have not had the mildew in Wisconsin, yet. Don't know what I would plant if I couldn't use impatiens. You can't beat the mass of solid color all summer. I plant 700 plants each year and haven't found a critter or disease that bothers them, so far. Love the fact that I don't have to deadhead!!

  • Pam H Pam H on Sep 21, 2013
    Renee, no, I didn't want to chance 15 flats so I used vincas, which can't even come close to impatiens! I really missed the beauty of them this year. Everyone thinks that I have the soil mounded in the center of the beds because the impatiens would get 3 feet tall and all flowers-I literally would use a yard stick to prove there wasn't any dirt...just all flowers!