Balsaminaceae

Balsaminaceae

Balsamina, belonging to, or similar to balsam or balm, from the Greek balsamon; origin obscure, possibly the sap from the succulent stems was sometimes used as a soothing balm. Herbs often with succulent stem, leaves simple and alternate. Flowers slightly zygomorphic. Calyx in Impatiens has 3 segments, the lower one is much larger than the others and forms a spur to 5 cm long. Petals 5, often fused or partially fused, staminal filaments partially fused and the anthers tend to form a cap over the stigma. Carpels 4-5, ovary superior. Fruit maybe fleshy but if dry then it is explosively dehiscent, often after only a very light touch, hence a common name of “Touch-me-not”.