Skip to content


Return to News & Events

Garden Impatiens Are Back ... Without The Risk! NEW Beacon™ Exhibits High Resistance to Impatiens Downy Mildew

New Impatiens from PanAmerican Seed offers high resistance to Plasmopara obducens, the cause of Impatiens downy mildew; launch campaign includes a charity donation that gives back 3% of Beacon sales.

WEST CHICAGO, ILLINOIS, January 2019: PanAmerican Seed is thrilled to re-launch Impatiens to the horticultural industry through its new series of I. walleriana with high resistance to Impatiens downy mildew. Beacon™ offers season-long performance and brings back fast-filling color to the shade ... without the disease risk! In addition to this product launch, PanAmerican Seed also announces a full-scale marketing plan for Beacon that targets greenhouse, retail and consumer audiences. The company will also “shine a light” on lesser known charitable causes by donating 3% of Beacon Impatiens’ global sales.

Since the widespread outbreak of Impatiens downy mildew, greenhouse producers have lost revenue due to plant losses during production and poor performance of Impatiens in landscape beds and planters. Many businesses hesitated to stock this key shade-loving flower. Now, through devoted breeding efforts and collaboration that spanned the globe, PanAmerican Seed offers Impatiens downy mildew resistant Beacon, and with it the opportunity to bring back into production this well-known, in-demand, easy-to-grow and versatile product for increased sales without the risk.

Beacon Impatiens is truly an effort years in the making. Since the early days of the devastating disease, greenhouses have been waiting for the chance to bring Impatiens back,” says Anne Leventry, President of PanAmerican Seed. “To bring Beacon to market with proven high resistance to Impatiens downy mildew, we are confident that our greenhouse customers, retailers and gardeners alike will also have the confidence to grow garden Impatiens once more.”

“With a plant structure, flowering time and flower size that is similar to existing Impatiens series, Beacon is easy to incorporate into production planning,” says Lisa Lacy, Global Product Manager for Beacon Impatiens. “There’s no special plant culture required for Beacon to be successful. So, for lasting color in the shade, you can rely on Beacon to thrive.”

In the spirit of bringing light – and happiness – back to shade gardens all over the world, PanAmerican Seed will donate portions of its Beacon Impatiens global sales to a less-widely known charitable organization. For the 2020 launch season, PanAmerican Seed will donate 3% of Beacon sales to Osteogenesis Imperfecta (OI), a genetic bone disorder characterized by fragile bones that break easily, also known as brittle bone disease. It is estimated that approximately 25,000 to 50,000 people in the United States alone have OI. The donation will go toward helping The OI Foundation improve the quality of life for those living with osteogenesis imperfecta through research, education, awareness and mutual support.

“Shining light on OI, a rare disorder, is one way we as a company can put the devastating effects of Impatiens downy mildew behind us and put the next generation of Impatiens to work for others,” says Sean Valk, Global Director of Sales for PanAmerican Seed. “PanAmerican Seed will select a new charity in the 2021 season, and again in subsequent years to do as much good as possible.”

Beacon Impatiens will have its official debut at California Spring Trials in Santa Paula, Calif., as well as other industry shows in 2019. There are currently 6 core colors and 2 mixes in the series. A limited supply is available now, with full-scale global availability in January 2020. Contact your preferred distributor for details; visit

To learn more about The Beacon Story, as well as the donation of global Beacon sales, please visit

About PanAmerican Seed
PanAmerican Seed is an internationally renowned breeder and producer of seed-raised flowers and vegetables based in West Chicago, IL, that produces high-quality and best-performing varieties. Research facilities in North and South America, the Pacific Rim and Europe enable us to test and evaluate new varieties under numerous climatic conditions. Our state-of-the-art seed distribution center guarantees quick, efficient processing of orders for our worldwide customers. Visit for more information.

Return to News & Events
opens in a new window
Return to Top of Page