Jewelweed (Impatiens noli-tangere)


Powdermill Nature Reserve



Pacific Northwest from Washington to Alaska, throughout B.C. Extremely similar species/subspecies eastward from the Rocky Mountains to New England, South to Florida.



Extremely variable climate tolerations throughout broad range. Low to mid-elevations.


Local Occurrence:

Locally abundant and widespread, forming extensive thickets in valleys and drainages.


Habitat Preferences:

Moist forests, thickets, swamps, wetland margins, streamsides. Shade to full sun. Anywhere with adequately moist soil conditions.


Plant Strategy:

Annual. Colonial. Mid-Late Succession


Associated species (In Pacific Northwest):

Black Cottonwood (Populus trichocarpa), Red Alder (Alnus rubra), Salmonberry (Rubus spectabilis), Stinging Nettle (Urtica dioca), and many, many others.


Collect As:



Collection Guidelines:

No restrictions. Collect seed in Late Summer and Early Fall. The alternate common name Touch-Me-Not, is derived from the dehiscent capsule which burst open to disperse the seeds within, at only the slightest touch when ripe.


Seed Germination:

A period (~1 month) of cold stratification greatly improves germination rates.


Seed Life:

12-18 months storage.


Storage Conditions:

Best Germination occurs when seeds are stored at 41F.


Propagation Reccommendations:

If sufficient quantities are available, sow seeds in situ in fall or spring. Seeds are the only feasible propagation vector. If seeds are limiting, sow in greenhouse in spring, transplant as soon as acceptable size is achieved. Once established on site, patch should be self-sustaining.


Soil/Medium requirements:

Tolerates many soil types, pH levels. Acceptable pH range from 3.4 to 7.7. Plants of all ages are susceptible to frost.


Installation Form:

Seeds or seedlings


Recommended Planting Density:

2-6 inches.


Care Requirements After Planting:

If transplanting from greenhouse, ensure that danger of frost is past. Do not plant into soils that are not adequately moist. As a garden ornamental/medicinal herb, water frequently.


Normal rate of Spread/Lifespan:

A patch of jewelweed should persist indefinitely.






Pojar J., McKinnon A.,1994 Plants of the Pacific Northwest, B.C. Ministry of Forests and Lone Publishing, Canada




Compiled By Shannon Kachel, Spring 2006