Montana Outdoors

May 19, 2009

Kidney-leaf White violet

A week ago I posted some photos of white violets that were variants of the Early Blue species. Yesterday I found these along the Little Thompson River and they are a separate species, Kidney-leaf White Violets (Viola renifolia) and are smaller than the blue violets. They are not endangered, but are listed as a “potential species of concern”.

In a classic understatement the Montana Field Guide casually mentions that they grow in “swampy or boggy” soil. While making my way down the stream in the thick brush of the creek bottom, I came to an area that was so boggy I almost didn’t try to wade through it. It was a suck-your-boots-off, stop-an-elk-in-it’s-tracks type bog, and right smack in the middle, on a tiny area just barely above the surface of the water, these little white specks were quite happily growing. I don’t want to describe the experience of photographing them in that location other than to mention that I’m pleased to say that I finally got most of the mud out of my mustache today.

Kidney-leaf White violet

Kidney-leaf White violet

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