For Your Garden - June 2015

Native plants provide beauty as well as food and shelter for wildlife. Native species are adapted to the Illinois climate. They require little or no watering and are resistant to drought, insects and most diseases. Because they are perennials, you can welcome their presence year after year.
spotted touch-me-not (Impatiens capensis)
Photo © Illinois Department of Natural Resources

Spotted touch-me-not, or jewelweed, grows in shady areas with wet soil statewide. The plant may reach two to five feet in height. Its leaves are thin, and the stem is very succulent. Flowers are produced from June through October and hang singly from a stalk. Flowers are orange with darker orange spots. The spur at the end of the flower curves forward toward the flower's opening. The fruits are pods. When ripe, a touch causes the pod to explode and expel its seeds a good distance from the plant.
Classification and taxonomy are based on Mohlenbrock, Robert H. 2014. Vascular flora of Illinois: A field guide. Fourth edition. Southern Illinois University Press, Carbondale. 536 pp.

 Illinois Range

 Native Plant Information

For more information about native Illinois plants, including where to purchase them and planting guides, view the following publications at our publications page. You can access more information on the Schoolyard Habitat Action Grant page, too.