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  • Sarah Besse

Pop open our curiosity!


Jewelweed capsules explode open, propelling seeds here and there.

Pop!

Do it again!

Pop, hop!

Pop, hop, drop!

Pods pop!


We wonder:

  • Why don't the thin seedpods burst open like the thick ones do?

  • How does the capsule turn into a green coil?

  • How can we catch the jewelweed seeds?

  • How many seeds are there in a pod?

  • What happens to the bees when they’re “swallowed” inside the flowers?

  • Why does the largest patch of jewelweed grow near Bussey Brook?

  • Can I plant a seed at home? What does it need to grow?

  • Where are the “jewels” in jewelweed?


Jewelweed sparks our interest in many areas, including:

  • Science:

seed dispersal mechanisms

camouflage

hummingbird and bee pollinators

hydrophobic leaves

life cycle

  • Language:

rhyming (pop, hop, drop)

“talking local” (nouns of flora and fauna, verbs of movement, adjectives of description)

  • Social skills:

“It popped!” [look at each other and giggle] “Here, I found a big one for you to pop.”

  • Refining vision:

Finding camouflaged capsules

  • Fine motor:

Popping the capsules with pincer grip

  • Math:

Same number of seeds in each pod?


Get outside and find a jewelweed patch!

Look for jewelweed in moist semi-shaded areas, around the edges of streams and marshes, and in disturbed habitats such as ditches.

Please note that while BOPN has a friendly relationship with the Arboretum, we are separate organizations and the Arboretum is not involved with organizing or operating BOPN's programs.

Nondiscrimination statement:

Boston Outdoor Preschool Network admits students of any race to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at BOPN and does not discriminate on the basis of race in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship programs, and other school-administered programs.