Montana Outdoors

March 5, 2010

Now they are everywhere

They began their bloom with buds at the end of January on Buttercup Ridge. Now the blossoms can be seen nearly everywhere. Today there were thousands on the south-facing slopes of the Coeur d’Alene mountains along the Clark Fork River on the Fourteen Mile trail. Spring has now taken hold!

Sagebrush buttercup

Sagebrush buttercup

Sagebrush buttercup

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19 Comments »

  1. I am jealous! We still have snowbanks

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    Comment by Sandy — March 6, 2010 @ 9:34 am

    • It’s good to see them, but much too early. This is what those hillsides looked like about a year ago (a more normal year) and there was nearly 10 feet of snow 4,000 feet higher up.

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      Comment by montucky — March 6, 2010 @ 9:55 am

  2. Wow, how pretty that they’re everywhere. And how strange that spring is springing so early. You’ve had an odd winter…as have many parts of the country.

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    Comment by Candace — March 6, 2010 @ 3:30 pm

    • It has been an odd winter. As far as weather is concerned, the US has been upside down.

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      Comment by montucky — March 6, 2010 @ 7:33 pm

  3. Amazing! And it is also amazing how the pretty buttercups are glossy looking. I haven’t seen a wildflower yet! Must be a sight to see those buttercups! I especially like the last photo as the flower looks like it just pushed up from the earth.

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    Comment by Anna Surface — March 6, 2010 @ 8:52 pm

    • They are very glossy, rather waxy. Because they are the only flowers blooming this time of year they really attract attention, and it’s so good to see them spread out over a mountainside. Buttercups on a sunny spring day are just plain hard to beat!

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      Comment by montucky — March 6, 2010 @ 9:26 pm

  4. How wonderful to know that spring is here. Even here in the Adirondacks it is springy, but alas, still a while before the first flowers.

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    Comment by Cedar — March 7, 2010 @ 10:23 am

    • Today I was walking along some large fields not far from the house and the buttercups are now blooming there too; lots of them! And a half mile or so from there a Mountain Blue Bird came by and perched on a fence post, the first I’ve seen. A sight for sore eyes!

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      Comment by montucky — March 7, 2010 @ 7:31 pm

  5. Amazing, isn’t it! What we have followed from the first peeking of the first flower until now. Now there are fields of them. Lovely, as always. I like that waxy finish. Do the animals eat these flowers?
    We have Eastern Blue Birds here all winter. Had DH put up a bird house for them. Since then, there have been several batches hatched out in that house. Doing what we can to expand the population.

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    Comment by Iona — March 7, 2010 @ 10:49 pm

    • Wow, it must be nice to have blue birds all winter! Now that I’ve seen one, I will have to clean out the boxes. I’ve been cleaning and repairing about 20 in a stretch of a mile and a half. They won’t stay down near my house, so I work with their houses along some big alfalfa fields a few miles away. Last year there were lots of little ones born in those houses. As you say, doing what I can.

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      Comment by montucky — March 8, 2010 @ 12:19 am

  6. Did you put up all those blue bird houses? Wow! You should have a flock of them by now when you consider they often produce 3 clutches a year.
    Now is the time to clean their nest boxes. We have a problem here. Something always chews the entry hole to at least twice the size it should be. Can’t have that!! We’ve never been able to find out what. Squirrels? Other birds? So every year, the house requires a face lift. I’ve encouraged DH to put metal around the hole, but he always has other projects he’s involved with, it seems. I’d like to see at least 4 more houses up in our yard, but they must be about 75 ft apart, which, I’m told, it takes to support one family. This year, we have a couple of robins who chase off the blue birds every time they approach the house. I have encouraged DH to get the metal about the hole. If a robin is taking up house squatting, that will deter them. 😀

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    Comment by Iona — March 9, 2010 @ 12:56 am

    • Most of those houses were there from years ago. In western Montana there are many “routes” of houses that were taken care of by various people. This was probably a route or part of one, but the caretaker has now gone. The last couple of years I’ve repaired and replaced many of them. Yesterday I cleaned out all 20 and none needed repair. All 20 had been used.

      I would not put metal around the hole because the birds might get cut from it. What I do is cut 1/4 finished plywood just a little smaller than the front of the house and drill the right size hole in that. It then can be screwed to the box using short screws. If the holes get enlarged, then I can just change the front panel. I think other species of birds are usually the culprits who enlarge the holes.

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      Comment by montucky — March 9, 2010 @ 8:31 am

      • Good idea for taking care of the hole increase. I suspect that it might be birds, but we’ve never seen anything there working to enlarge the hole. Thanks again for the tip.

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        Comment by Iona — March 9, 2010 @ 3:58 pm

  7. looks like a little brightness in every nook and cranny. you should try “spring time” in Singapore!! same sweltering heat as always! (though this was the driest Feb they had in 140 years!)

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    Comment by silken — March 9, 2010 @ 3:34 pm

    • I would love to see springtime there, silken, although I no longer do well in heat. We hit 60 a few days ago and I suffered from the heat!

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      Comment by montucky — March 9, 2010 @ 8:44 pm

      • wow! 60 degrees and I’m in a sweater! 🙂 yeah, singapore would be awfully hot for you then…

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        Comment by silken — March 11, 2010 @ 8:25 pm

        • It would be tough. It’s humid, too I hear. Isn’t it interesting that you and I are opposites on temperature!

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          Comment by montucky — March 11, 2010 @ 10:47 pm

  8. Beautiful images Terry, your getting me fired up !!

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    Comment by Bernie Kasper — March 12, 2010 @ 3:48 pm

    • It’s about that time, Bernie! Today I saw a Yellow Bell and some chickweed in bloom. Both about a month earlier than usual.

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      Comment by montucky — March 12, 2010 @ 9:58 pm


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