Sometimes, your flowers look other-worldly – like nothing else I’ve ever seen. I finally decided one reason is that you’re finding many of them in the woods – it’s darker there. We’re used to seeing our wildflowers in bright sunshine, out on the prairies and such. Makes a difference. But gracious – I do love your froggie. Do you suppose he has a magic twanger? Most people around here probably don’t even remember that – kids’ tv from the 50s is a long way away!
Yes, most of what I find is in the forest and usually with low light conditions. I will seldom photograph a flower in direct sun. This guy might have one! I could tell there was a lot of “imp” in him. I had my nose to the ground looking at a tiny flower when he took a big leap and thumped down right near me. I’m sure I saw a grin on his face.
I’m fortunate to live approximately in the middle of the Lolo National Forest which covers about 1,100 square miles. As much as I wander, I see only a part of it and even then the diversity is overwhelming, especially in the roadless areas.
According to the USDA pyrola chlorantha grows here but I’ve never seen it. It’s the same with the spotted coral root-I’ll be checking into what conditions it likes and looking for that one. I can’t understand why I’m not seeing the twinflower, but the one leaf foamflower doesn’t grow here, so that explains my not seeing that one. Excellent photos of all of these plants. (and frogs)
The Wintergreen might be past its bloom time there already: your area seems to be quite a bit ahead of here. I see both that and the Coralroots in pretty much the same areas, along side of trails right at the edge of the trees where they would see the sun only sparingly. Nearly all of the trails that I frequent were created in the 1930′s for access to mountain peaks that had fire lookouts on them. They are still maintained fairly well by Forest Service trail crews. The corridors through the trees are always 15 – 20 feet wide, and the trails are cleared of major downfalls according to the Forest Service specifications of 8 feet in width and about 10 feet high, which is about right to horse riders and pack strings. Lots of the more shelter-loving wildflowers find ideal conditions of sun/shade in various places within these corridors. Twinflowers like the whole corridor as long as the sun angle on the trail is such that there is little direct sun.
Thanks for the tips. I’m thinking that powerline cuts, which we have a lot of here, might also hold a wealth of wildflowers. They are a big path through the forest, much like what you describe, but they are rough going!
Yes, there is an amazing diversity here. I tend to gravitate to the less-traveled parts of the forests, especially the roadless areas and the plants in those places represent the real natural diversity of the area before the onset of development and the consequent restructuring of the pant species. Few of the original species do well in areas that have been cleared for traffic.
Love the twin flowers. I have a plant with flowers that are only different in color (white with a tinge of yellow) and it grows on a bush with a wood stem … are they the same?
Looking forward to seeing what the self heal flowers look like when they open up … I bet they are gorgeous (I love a deep purple flower).
Great shots … have you found a face for my challenge, yet?
These twinflowers are very low growing as a trailing evergreen shrub. You may have the Utah honeysuckle (AKA red twinberry), which is a much larger, woody shrub. iPhoto asked for a name for the face it saw in one of the twisted-stalk photos in a previous post, and also for one of the ladyslipper photos. I’m not quite sure what it’s seeing that I’m not.
I still have a couple dozen flowers that I haven’t yet posted, and now there will be more in the higher elevations. THese mountains create such a diversity on habitats that it’s no wonder that there is lots of variety here.
The world of the undisturbed forest, far from the roads is indeed a magical place, the world as it was meant to be; the real world. Tonight I’m lookiong forward to a trek into a high roadless area in the morning. Life is good!