Montana Outdoors

April 6, 2008

“The pretty little blue flower”

Filed under: Flowers, Montana, Nature, Outdoors, Photography, Photos, Pictures, Wildflowers — Tags: , — montucky @ 6:46 pm

In between the rain showers, the snow showers, the gropple and the hail this tiny blue flower showed up. My best guess is that it’s some kind of monkeyflower. It’s only about an eighth of an inch across and sits atop its stem an inch from the ground. I’ll refer to it by its scientific name, “the pretty little blue flower”.

Blue flower

The Woodland Stars are much more numerous now

Woodland Stars

and this Yellowbell has lots of tiny friends to keep it company.

Yellowbell and Whitlow Grass


  1. Thank you for sharing these. I am so hungry for wildflower finds.


    Comment by Bo — April 6, 2008 @ 7:40 pm

  2. I guess I am too, Bo. I enjoy them so much!


    Comment by montucky — April 6, 2008 @ 8:41 pm

  3. On the lower left hand side of your last shot – there are your spring beauty’s they just haven’t opened yet. (I’m pretty sure…) The little white flower carpet around your yellowbell I think is; Draba verna or spring whitlow-grass. It’s everywhere here too. (The ones with the white tops, four petals and the petals are split funky like.) Getting a close shot of those are difficult….. but you did a really good job here. Your blue guy perplexes me tho… I dug around a bit and couldn’t find anything. sorry. If I run into it I’ll mention it tho.

    Meanwhile, on to the real buisness of the day; I agree that flower is really pretty. I just love those yellowbells I don’t recall running into them last year – but today I did. They are really pretty and big where wildflowers are concerned. 🙂


    Comment by aullori — April 7, 2008 @ 1:13 am

  4. Oh, that little blue flower is just lovely. And it’s nice to see that the yellowbells have friends now.

    Spring is just gorgeous out there!

    Thanks so much!


    Comment by Sara — April 7, 2008 @ 7:00 am

  5. Lori,

    I was hoping those would be the spring beauties. I will check on them over the next few days. There were also other, much larger stems in the same area that had buds on them that I will watch. Now if we’d have a little sun for a change. There was rain again last night and I see snow patches in the shady areas again this morning. I’m still trying to ID the blue one too. I think often the very small ones are overlooked by those who catalog wildflowers. I have looked forward to the yellowbells every speing for many years and I’m pleased that this year there seem to be more than ever before. On the point of a hill in our yare there are usually 6 or 7: this year there are three times that many at least.


    Comment by montucky — April 7, 2008 @ 7:50 am

  6. Sara,

    Yes, spring is really bright and pretty here when it gets started. This is just the very beginning now. Over the next several months (depending on the altitude) Montana just explodes with color!

    I like the little unknown blue flower too and I had to work for that photo. It is growing on a hillside about a half mile from my house. When I discovered it yesterday a hail storm was just starting and it was mixed with rain. I got a couple pictures and then it became too wet to continue. By the time I made it home I was pretty well soaked, and I still didn’t have the photo I wanted. After the rain stopped I went back and difficult time finding the plant again but got the photo I posted.


    Comment by montucky — April 7, 2008 @ 7:58 am

  7. Pretty flowers you have there! The blue one does look like it’s a Figwort of some sort (not much help there since it’s a huge family). In addition to genus Mimulus (Monkeyflowers), maybe see what Collinsia are in your area. It looks a bit like Maiden Blue-Eyed Mary (see…


    Comment by Adam R. Paul — April 7, 2008 @ 10:45 am

  8. I just had to come back and comment – Those are unbelievably small!!! To an ant I’m sure it’s the size of a tree but to the naked eye… oh boy. Great shot! I ran into a little bit of those in with the whitlow-grass today and oh boy… suddenly my lens showed blue and I was like “what?” and sure enough I’m pretty sure it’s your blue little thing. Wow… great shot!!!


    Comment by aullori — April 7, 2008 @ 2:56 pm

  9. Thanks, Adam. I’ll spend some time looking at Collinsia. Glad to see you back around!


    Comment by montucky — April 7, 2008 @ 4:45 pm

  10. Lori,

    Yes, they are tiny! I’m sure a lot of folks have overlooked them, which is a shame.


    Comment by montucky — April 7, 2008 @ 4:49 pm

  11. These, and your other wonderful photographs, need to go into a book.

    For now, it’s a treat seeing them here.



    Comment by knightofswords — April 8, 2008 @ 11:04 am

  12. Gorgeous! So far around here… only skunk cabbage, coltsfoot, and buds of spring beauty and hepatica… and the leeks are up!


    Comment by winterwoman — April 8, 2008 @ 3:04 pm

  13. Thanks for the encouragement, Malcolm! I’ve been kind of toying with an idea for making a small book about the wildflowers of western Montana.


    Comment by montucky — April 8, 2008 @ 4:38 pm

  14. Winterwoman,

    I enjoyed your post about skunk cabbage. We don’t have that here though. Right now we’re kind of in a gap between flowers for a few weeks I think, then they will explode!


    Comment by montucky — April 8, 2008 @ 4:40 pm

  15. That little blue flower is very pretty. I like how the blue really stands out on the tips of the petals, and then fades to white toward the center. (At least, that’s how it looks to me in the picture)
    I really do like those Woodland Stars. The petals are so unique.


    Comment by AK_Adventurer — April 8, 2008 @ 5:17 pm

  16. I really like these little ones too. They are so small though that one can’t really get a good look at them without the magnification of a lens. I’m sure in past years I have walked on many of them without even being aware.


    Comment by montucky — April 8, 2008 @ 7:12 pm

  17. These are beautiful Terry, ours are really starting to come along and its great to out in the field again, great work !!


    Comment by Bernie Kasper — April 8, 2008 @ 8:58 pm

  18. After the winter you’ve had Bernie, I can imagine how good it feels to see spring coming!


    Comment by montucky — April 8, 2008 @ 9:06 pm

  19. […] parviflora or Small-flowered blue-eyed Mary. (Thanks guys!) Here is Adam’s shot – and Montucky’s shot of the flower. (They both in my opinion did a brilliant job of capturing one of the smallest things […]


    Pingback by trying to give free time to everything… « Random Musings — April 11, 2008 @ 4:08 pm

  20. That’s not blue eyed Mary, but I don’t know what it is. I have shots of it also, from SW Montana. Did you ever find out what it was?


    Comment by ecorover — May 27, 2013 @ 12:43 pm

    • Blue-eyed Mary is as close as I could come to it. Might be the photo is a little strange.


      Comment by montucky — May 27, 2013 @ 12:47 pm

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