In spring, shallow-rooted succulent shoots start to crowd a narrow space on the hillside.

Some, through summer, succumb to stiff winds, fallen branches, strangling vines, or the trampling browse of animals.

In July and August, those still standing may flower.

Here appears Impatiens capensis, the spotted jewelweed, orange touch-me-not.

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Come September, the pregnant seed pods seem poised to expel another generation at the slightest prod.

101_3413edcropBNow complementing the precious few plants that remain, residual gems of recent rains make it easy to see how jewelweed might have earned its name.

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[Click here to see last year’s post on yellow jewelweed .]

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