Gardeners on alert for Impatiens Downy Mildew - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Gardeners on alert for Impatiens Downy Mildew

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BURLINGTON, Vt. -

Plant experts are warning gardeners about a disease that targets impatiens.

Impatiens Downy Mildew is a fungus-like disease that causes rapid defoliation for impatiens during cooler weather. Symptoms include yellowing in the leaves and a white downy-like coating under the leaves. And Downy Mildew can survive in the soil during the winter months -- even after the plant has died.

"If people do see it in their gardens this year, they should clean up their plants right away, bag them, don't let that plant decompose into the soil where more over wintering spores would rest, so clean up the infected plants and just landfill them," said Ann Hazelrigg, a Plant Pathologists with the University of Vermont.

Hazelrigg said the best long term prevention is to plant New Guinea Impatiens instead. They are resistant to the disease.

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