Montana Outdoors

July 10, 2011

Wildflowers of summer (2)

Filed under: Wildflowers — Tags: , , , , — montucky @ 10:48 pm

The Pointer and I left for our evening walk a little late tonight, having waited until the coolness of evening set in and chose to go to a section of forest road in a shaded canyon where it would be cool. Just as I was about to park the Jeep, down the road came two absolutely gorgeous Black bears, I would guess a mother and her last summer’s cub. They were jet black and all signs of winter’s rubbing and matting was gone from their coats in which the hairs were very long and thick. As usual I was in awe at the size of their paws as they loped along, kicking up small puffs of dust from the old road.

Now, back to wildflowers…

White Lupines

White Lupine

White Lupines, the first I’ve encountered!

Nodding Onion

Nodding Onion ~ Allium cernuum

Arnica seed head

Arnica seed head

Nootka rose

Nootka (I think) Rose




  1. Wow! Both Krista (Imperfect Perfection) and you have seen bears recently. Very cool…
    We had one in a nearby city a week or two ago. That wasn’t so cool.

    The seed pod is spectacularly gorgeous Terry. Love the white Lupine, too!


    Comment by Stacey Dawn — July 10, 2011 @ 10:54 pm

    • I love the bears! It’s sad to see them go into a town though. We have them come through our yard once or twice in summer, but they just pass through and do no harm; don’t stay around.


      Comment by montucky — July 10, 2011 @ 11:03 pm

  2. Oh that huckleberry is a sweet thing. Outstanding photos. A bear. I want to see the one who goes through my yard (last year one ate all the apples that fell from the tree in back), but I know it would be a little unsettling, too. Still, I do want a sighting. That sounds cool. It’s been quite a while…. Your photos are such a breathe of fresh air.


    Comment by Teresa Evangeline — July 11, 2011 @ 5:29 am

    • I hope you safely catch a look at that bear. The ones that come through our yard almost always do so at night though, but they are active at dawn and dusk too. I usually see half a dozen each summer.


      Comment by Montucky — July 11, 2011 @ 8:37 pm

  3. Excellent close-ups. It’s always good to see details.

    In Texas the lupines are called bluebonnets, and they, like your lupines, have a white variety. In fact I’ve noticed that quite a few purple flowers have white variants.

    The arnica seed head, with its “starburst” effect, reminds me a lot of some of the composites that we have in Austin; it’s not surprising that there should be family resemblances.

    In contrast, I’ve never seen a bear in Austin, except when the stock market goes down for a sustained period.

    Steve Schwartzman


    Comment by Steve Schwartzman — July 11, 2011 @ 6:33 am

    • Those kind of bears I’m not at all fond of, lol! I would really like to see the bluebonnets in bloom: I’ve seen only photos of them!


      Comment by Montucky — July 11, 2011 @ 8:40 pm

  4. When you see bears like that, how long do you wait to get out & start hiking? What about your dog? Does he/she run after them?

    The flowers are gorgeous, of course, & I love lupine =)


    Comment by Tricia — July 11, 2011 @ 7:55 am

    • I drove on about a mile up the road before we started hiking: when they saw me the bears separated and I gave them room to get back together again without worrying about me being around. The Pointer will not chase anything larger than a chipmunk and of course birds, but when we encounter a bear I keep her behind me so as not to be distracting to the bears.


      Comment by Montucky — July 11, 2011 @ 8:44 pm

  5. How delightful to see black bears! It has been ages since I’ve seen black bears. Gorgeous, vivid, and detailed wildflowers captures. I especially like the Arnica seed head and Nootka rose.


    Comment by Anna — July 11, 2011 @ 7:55 am

    • Seeing a bear is a big bonus to an outing! They are beautiful animals!


      Comment by Montucky — July 11, 2011 @ 8:46 pm

  6. The white lupine is very unusual indeed! A black bear sighting– wow!!


    Comment by Barbara — July 11, 2011 @ 10:28 am

    • Those were the first white lupines I’ve ever seen, and strangely I’ve seen several since. Maybe they show up when the species is having a very good year. THe bears were a bit of a surprise because I had convinced myself that they were now at much higher elevations and these were down low.


      Comment by Montucky — July 11, 2011 @ 8:49 pm

  7. We are having a banner year for lupine in our yard outside Missoula. Though most all of them are blue/purple, we always have a few clumps with pink flowers and this year for the first time we have a bunch of white flowered lupines growing right outside our window. I wonder how these things morph into new colors.

    Our bee balms have also come in in 3 hues other than the usual pinky-purple: magenta, hot pink, and for a couple summers, red. Looking forward to your bee balm photos later in the season, montuck.


    Comment by Kim — July 11, 2011 @ 12:34 pm

    • I haven’t seen the wild bergamot yet this year and may miss it. The only place I’ve seen it close around here was by the river and where it usually grows is still under about 8 feet of water. It will be interesting to see if it survives!


      Comment by Montucky — July 11, 2011 @ 8:56 pm

      • I think it’s still too early for bergamot/bee balm, even in a normal year. At least at my elevation. The lupines are all done before they bloom as I recall.


        Comment by Kim — July 12, 2011 @ 10:23 am

        • I’ve noticed that their bloom times have varied here. I have photos from 2009 of them on July 5th. I’ll check near the river: many flowers bloom there first.


          Comment by Montucky — July 12, 2011 @ 2:42 pm

  8. They were friendly bears, I guess. What did your dog and the bears think of each other?

    Arnica is something I have heard of but not seen. It is very pretty. So are the lupines and the rose.

    I don’t think we have any kind of wild onion here, but am not certain. They were in Oklahoma, though. Just, not that pretty.


    Comment by sandy — July 11, 2011 @ 2:42 pm

    • The bears are curious about her, but she would rather be someplace else! Arnica is very common here, especially on the sides of the deep canyons. It sure adds color to the hillsides! The onion sure smell like onion, too!


      Comment by Montucky — July 11, 2011 @ 8:59 pm

  9. Hi Montucky, Great adventure. So glad you got to safely see the bears. Have a wonderful day tomorrow!


    Comment by wildlifewatcher — July 11, 2011 @ 7:42 pm

    • I love bears. Wish I could have watched them for awhile, but the area was very heavily wooded and the underbrush was thick and so they disappeared quickly.One did run down the road for a ways though and I enjoyed seeing him run!


      Comment by Montucky — July 11, 2011 @ 9:00 pm

  10. Love those lupines! I have never seen white ones in the wild, either. They are so pretty paired with the blue ones. I’ve never seen a bear in the wild…something I look forward to someday…


    Comment by kateri — July 11, 2011 @ 9:14 pm

    • I hope you do get to see a bear in the wild! They seem to be special representatives of the family of wildlife.


      Comment by Montucky — July 11, 2011 @ 10:04 pm

  11. wow! about the bears. I bet that is amazing, if not scary. the wildflowers are really pretty, haven’t seen the white lupines


    Comment by silken — July 13, 2011 @ 9:10 pm

    • I wish you could see some of these bears: I know you would love them!


      Comment by Montucky — July 13, 2011 @ 9:46 pm

  12. The detail in the arnica seed head is awesome. I used to take arnica, I can’t even remember what for, though. You’re seeing a lot of bears lately.


    Comment by Candace — July 13, 2011 @ 11:17 pm

  13. I don’t know what arnica is used for today but the Indians used it as a plaster for bruises and cuts. There are lots of bears around here. I’ll see more when I find tim to make a few overnight hikes and will be out at dusk.


    Comment by Montucky — July 14, 2011 @ 9:03 pm

  14. Very nice collection again. I have seen White Lupine is not rarity here in Finland. I checked Internet (in Finnish) and many people have seen it as me too!


    Comment by sartenada — July 14, 2011 @ 11:34 pm

    • That’s interesting. Perhaps it is unusual only in this small area.


      Comment by Montucky — July 15, 2011 @ 9:36 pm

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