Montana Outdoors

April 7, 2011

‘the plant protected by twelve gods’

Shooting Star

Today on one small corner of the Flathead Indian Reservation, the first few Dark-throated Shooting Stars (Dodecatheon pulchellum) were in bloom. (This could also be a sub-species, Cusick’s Shooting Star.) The genus name ┬áis from the Greek dodeka (twelve) and theos (god) and means ‘the plant protected by twelve gods’. They are quite common in this part of western Montana and are among the wildflowers that bloom quite early in the spring. I’ve seen them also at much higher elevations blooming in small patches on steep sunny hillsides in late summer.

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