The jury's out.
Since the widespread outbreak of the insidious downy mildew six years ago, impatiens have plummeted in popularity. Once the top shade annual in most European and U.S. gardens, the resurgence of the disease year after year caused the busy lizzie to fall in popularity.
Introduced in Europe in spring trials for 2018, Imara has now come to the U.S., and is offered in limited quantities.
In Swahili, the term Imara means "strong" or "resolute."
Planning to avoid traditional impatiens this year, I was intrigued by the appearance of a "disease resistant" strain at the county farm market. After plopping down thirteen bucks for a flat of Imara impatiens let's hope the plants not only thrive--but plant themselves!
Bred from seed, Imara claims to be "The first impatiens walleriana with a high degree of resistance to downy mildew." The grower also promises Imara will flower earlier and last longer to frost"--but only time will tell.
There is no difference in appearance from the former moldy variety.
Individual plants look healthy and full. In the ground for a few weeks, there's no sign of disease.
So it it time to "take back the shade?" Unclear, but "stand by" for further updates.
July 2019 update: Despite a very rainy June and July, there's no sign of downy mildew.
More on impatiens plight (blight:)
Bye Bye Busy Lizzies. What to Plant Instead of Impatiens?
Impatiens Update 2019
|Imara going strong August 2019|