An Invasive From the Himalayas: September 2022

The Toronto area has two members of the Impatiens or Touch-me-not (Jewelweed) family.

Spotted:

Spotted Jewelweed (Impatiens capensis)
Spotted Jewelweed (Impatiens capensis)

and Pale:

Pale Jewelweed (Impatiens pallida)
Pale Jewelweed (Impatiens pallida)

In Newcomb’s Wildflower Guide (1977), these are the only two members of the Impatiens family which are described.

Since that time, an Impatiens with a much larger flower had started to appear in the wild. Likely it originated as a planted ornamental.

Himalayan Balsam (Impatiens grandulifera)

The plant is called Himalayan Balsam or Asian Touch-me-not (Jewelweed) and has become so common that it is considered an invasive and is often removed from natural sites. I found many examples during a recent Don Valley area walk:

Himalayan Balsam (Impatiens grandulifera)
Himalayan Balsam (Impatiens grandulifera)
Himalayan Balsam (Impatiens grandulifera)

Other botany:

Wild-cucumber (Echinocystis lobata)
Virginia Creeper (Parthenocissus inserta)
Great Burdock (Arctium lappa)
Virginia Creeper (Parthenocissus inserta)
Cow-parsnip (Heracleum maximum)
Cocklebur (Xanthium strumarium)
Japanese Knotweed (Fallopia japonica)
Common Hop (Humulus lupulus)
Daisy Fleabane (Erigeron annuus)
Dogwood (Cornus)
Dog-strangling Vine (Vincetoxicum rossicum)
Spotted Jewelweed (Impatiens capensis)
Common Hop (Humulus lupulus)
Hawthorn (Crataegus)
Spotted Jewelweed (Impatiens capensis)
Jerusalem Artichoke (Helianthus tuberosus)
Tansy (Tanecetum vulgare)
Soapwort (Saponaria officinalis)
Prickly Lettuce (Lactuca serriola)
Panicled Aster (Symphyotrichum lanceolatum)
Cow-parsnip (Heracleum maximum)
Forget-me-not (Myosotis)
Common Hop (Humulus lupulus)
Red Raspberry (Rubus strigosus)

MAILBOX

Information which looks interesting of this female ornithologist

Florence Merriam Bailey – Wikipedia

NATURE POETRY

Bright, bright, restless bright, through the sunburnt meads,  
Wavers the butterfly;  
Ever across its path a pilot invisible leads  
A sylphid fleet of the thistle’s light and feathery seeds,  
And August passeth by.                                                 – Edith Matilda Thomas (1854–1925)

Miles Hearn

1 thought on “An Invasive From the Himalayas: September 2022

  1. Bob Dermer

    I seem to recall using jewelweed (with a 4, 6 or 8 sided stalk ?) as a remedy for itch. Does that sound likely ? What are the negative implications of Jewelweed other than its foreign origin ?

    Reply

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