Impatiens glandulifera Himalayan Balsam
Himalayan balsam on banks of River Lagan

Family: Balsaminaceae

Origin: Himalayas

Himalayan balsam is also known as Indian balsam and policeman's helmet.

It is a beautiful suuculent annual species introduced to gardens in the 19th century, but has now become naturalised on lake and river banks across Northern Ireland.

These four photographs show the plant on the banks of the River Lagan in Co Down.

Himalayan balsam on banks of River Lagan

The plant now grows in such dense stands that it prevents the growth of native waterside plants.

Himalayan balsam on banks of River Lagan

The plant shows great variation in flower colour.

Himalayan balsam on banks of River Lagan

The flowers are followed by explosive seed capsules which hurl the seeds a considerable distance from the parent plant.

Himalayan balsam on banks of River Lagan Click here to go to the Home Page Click here to go to the Nuisance Alien species list
 
Cookie Policy :: © National Museums Northern Ireland, 2004