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Balsaminaceae

This family contains exactly one genus, Impatiens.

See list of 3 species in this genus

The flowers of Impatiens are difficult to interpret. There are 3 sepals—a lower one that is petaloid and forms a conical structure prolonged backward into a slender nectary spur and 2 upper ones that are small and sepaloid or petaloid. There are 5 petals—an upper one that is concave and projected upward or forward and 2 lower ones that are each formed from 2 connate petals.

  • 1a. Leaves opposite or whorled, the blades sharply serrate; petioles provided with large, dark glands; Perianth blue or purple to pink or white; capsule obovoid
  • 1b. Leaves alternate, the blades crenate-serrate; petioles lacking glands or infrequently with slender, dark glands near the apex at the junction of the blade; corolla orange-yellow or pale yellow; capsule slender-clavate in outline
    • 2a. Perianth orange-yellow (rarely bright yellow, pink, or white), spotted with red-brown (rarely unspotted); spur 7–10 mm long, strongly curved, projecting forward; saccate portion of the spurred sepal longer than wide
    • 2b. Perianth pale yellow (rarely yellow-white or white), sparingly dotted with red-brown; spur 4–6 mm long, curved at a right angle, not projecting forward [Fig. 478]; saccate portion of the spurred sepal wider than long

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 Show photos of:   Each photo represents one species in this genus.