Image: Rod Allday
Jewelweed or Spotted Touch-Me-Not (Impatiens capensis).
A poultice from the crushed leaves of jewelweed can be used on poison ivy rash; this poultice also works for cuts, burns, bug-bites, sprains, warts and ringworm. Juice from the stems also can be applied to poison ivy rash.
Here in North America, a number of plants that live close to us have healing properties, most of which would benefit from further research.
Much of today’s information has been passed along either from American Indians or as “old wives’ tales.”
Warning! Like aspirin (which comes from the bark of Willow trees), whatever can heal or ease discomfort can just as easily make you deathly ill, even kill, when the wrong dosage is used.
Double Warning!! Verify every plant identification via a trained botanist before ingesting any portion of any plant – because you are literally staking your life on the plant’s identification.
That said, following are a few of the more common plants and their traditional usages.