Policeman's Helmet (Impatiens glandulifera)
Policeman's helmet (Impatiens glandulifera)

Policeman’s helmet

(Impatiens glandulifera)

Description

  • Native to Himalayan region.
  • Requires moist soils and grows along riparian areas, irrigation ditches, roadsides and in wetlands.
  • Annual succulent herb that spreads through seed.
  • Orchid like flowers are shades of pink through purple. Blooms from July to frost.
  • Roots can be white, pink or green.
  • Mature seed capsules explode when disturbed and eject seeds up to 5 meters away from parent plant. Produces up to 2500 seeds.

Consequences of Invasion

  • Increases erosion in winter due to thick patches of die-off and exposure of bare soil.
  • Dominates native vegetation and diminishes conservation value.
  • May decrease beneficial pollinator visits to native plants.

 

Integrated Pest Management Options

  • The best time to remove Policeman’s Helmet is late June to early August, when it is in flower.
  • It is best to avoid removal once seed pods are present, as they will release seeds and may increase the spread of this plant.
  • Handpulling or digging is an effective control method, but the entire root mass must be removed.
  • All pulled plants should be bagged and brought to a landfill. All landfills within the RDCK and RDKB accept invasive plant species for free. Ensure your material is bagged in clear plastic bags and notify the attendant that you have invasive plant species. Plants must be identifiable through the bag. For more information please see the RDCK Resource Recovery Bylaw.

Reporting Sightings

If you see this plant, please report it using the provincial reporting tools or send an email to info@ckiss.ca. Please include the following details: date observed, precise location, photos, and the size of the infestation.

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