Montana Outdoors

June 26, 2012

In search of the whuzzit…

Another trip to the home of the “whuzzit” last night yielded no new clues to its identity, but as with every wander in the forest there were other photo ops.


Twinflower, Linnaea borealis

One-leaved Foamflower

One-leaved Foamflower, Tiarella unifoliata

Self-heal (young plant)

Self-heal; just starting to bloom

Spotted Coralroot

Spotted Coralroot, Corallorhiza maculata

Green Wintergreen, Green-flowered Wintergreen

Green Wintergreen, Green-flowered Wintergreen

Green Wintergreen, Green-flowered Wintergreen, pyrola chlorantha

Silver-leaf Phacelia, White-leaf Phacelia

Silver-leaf Phacelia, White-leaf Phacelia , Phacelia hastata

and this guy:



  1. We have several pyrola’s here, but I’ve never seen this one. Love the toad!


    Comment by jomegat — June 26, 2012 @ 10:08 pm

    • We have several too. This one seems to be the earliest to blossom.


      Comment by montucky — June 26, 2012 @ 10:23 pm

  2. Lots of droopy-headed flowers! Very pretty, and a magic toad, too. I’ve never known the difference between frogs and toads.


    Comment by Candace — June 26, 2012 @ 10:11 pm

    • Actually, toads are a type of frog. Here is a website that has a pretty good explanation.


      Comment by montucky — June 26, 2012 @ 10:25 pm

  3. I think the ‘whuzzit’ is a great name anyway – sounds as if it’s from a nursery rhyme! Love these new images, you find something wonderful on every trip.


    Comment by Jo Woolf — June 27, 2012 @ 12:38 am

    • There always seems to be something interesting or pretty outdoors. Now that the snow has melted back quite a bit in the high country I will be getting up there again. It will be a change of pace!


      Comment by montucky — June 27, 2012 @ 9:02 pm

  4. Sometimes, your flowers look other-worldly – like nothing else I’ve ever seen. I finally decided one reason is that you’re finding many of them in the woods – it’s darker there. We’re used to seeing our wildflowers in bright sunshine, out on the prairies and such. Makes a difference. But gracious – I do love your froggie. Do you suppose he has a magic twanger? Most people around here probably don’t even remember that – kids’ tv from the 50s is a long way away!


    Comment by shoreacres — June 27, 2012 @ 3:36 am

    • Yes, most of what I find is in the forest and usually with low light conditions. I will seldom photograph a flower in direct sun. This guy might have one! I could tell there was a lot of “imp” in him. I had my nose to the ground looking at a tiny flower when he took a big leap and thumped down right near me. I’m sure I saw a grin on his face.


      Comment by montucky — June 27, 2012 @ 9:06 pm

  5. It’s as if you’ve found a secret world down under…with the surprise of stunning wildflowers. Beautiful..beautiful..beautiful!!!


    Comment by Marcie — June 27, 2012 @ 5:45 am

    • I’m fortunate to live approximately in the middle of the Lolo National Forest which covers about 1,100 square miles. As much as I wander, I see only a part of it and even then the diversity is overwhelming, especially in the roadless areas.


      Comment by montucky — June 27, 2012 @ 9:12 pm

  6. According to the USDA pyrola chlorantha grows here but I’ve never seen it. It’s the same with the spotted coral root-I’ll be checking into what conditions it likes and looking for that one. I can’t understand why I’m not seeing the twinflower, but the one leaf foamflower doesn’t grow here, so that explains my not seeing that one. Excellent photos of all of these plants. (and frogs)


    Comment by New Hampshire Gardener — June 27, 2012 @ 6:19 am

    • The Wintergreen might be past its bloom time there already: your area seems to be quite a bit ahead of here. I see both that and the Coralroots in pretty much the same areas, along side of trails right at the edge of the trees where they would see the sun only sparingly. Nearly all of the trails that I frequent were created in the 1930’s for access to mountain peaks that had fire lookouts on them. They are still maintained fairly well by Forest Service trail crews. The corridors through the trees are always 15 – 20 feet wide, and the trails are cleared of major downfalls according to the Forest Service specifications of 8 feet in width and about 10 feet high, which is about right to horse riders and pack strings. Lots of the more shelter-loving wildflowers find ideal conditions of sun/shade in various places within these corridors. Twinflowers like the whole corridor as long as the sun angle on the trail is such that there is little direct sun.


      Comment by montucky — June 27, 2012 @ 9:23 pm

      • Thanks for the tips. I’m thinking that powerline cuts, which we have a lot of here, might also hold a wealth of wildflowers. They are a big path through the forest, much like what you describe, but they are rough going!


        Comment by New Hampshire Gardener — June 28, 2012 @ 7:03 am

        • Probably along the edge of the clearings, especially the shady edge. Depends on how much they disturbed the ground during construction.


          Comment by montucky — June 28, 2012 @ 9:16 pm

  7. You surprised me at the last! Loved them all 🙂


    Comment by zannyro — June 27, 2012 @ 6:36 am

    • He seemed to be in a strange place, quite a ways from the stream bottom. Looked like a very good specimen though, so I guess he knew what he was doing. “Froggy goes a courting”, maybe.


      Comment by montucky — June 27, 2012 @ 9:25 pm

  8. You have such an amazing diversity of flowering plants! Nice photos!


    Comment by Sue — June 27, 2012 @ 7:18 am

    • Yes, there is an amazing diversity here. I tend to gravitate to the less-traveled parts of the forests, especially the roadless areas and the plants in those places represent the real natural diversity of the area before the onset of development and the consequent restructuring of the pant species. Few of the original species do well in areas that have been cleared for traffic.


      Comment by montucky — June 27, 2012 @ 9:34 pm

  9. Love the twin flowers. I have a plant with flowers that are only different in color (white with a tinge of yellow) and it grows on a bush with a wood stem … are they the same?
    Looking forward to seeing what the self heal flowers look like when they open up … I bet they are gorgeous (I love a deep purple flower).
    Great shots … have you found a face for my challenge, yet?


    Comment by bearyweather — June 27, 2012 @ 7:27 am

    • These twinflowers are very low growing as a trailing evergreen shrub. You may have the Utah honeysuckle (AKA red twinberry), which is a much larger, woody shrub. iPhoto asked for a name for the face it saw in one of the twisted-stalk photos in a previous post, and also for one of the ladyslipper photos. I’m not quite sure what it’s seeing that I’m not.


      Comment by montucky — June 27, 2012 @ 9:44 pm

  10. Super photos…well done!!!


    Comment by dhphotosite — June 27, 2012 @ 8:16 am

  11. Lovely delicate flowers all of them! Our woodland flowers are all pretty much gone, so I am a tad bit envious.


    Comment by kateri — June 27, 2012 @ 1:15 pm

    • I still have a couple dozen flowers that I haven’t yet posted, and now there will be more in the higher elevations. THese mountains create such a diversity on habitats that it’s no wonder that there is lots of variety here.


      Comment by montucky — June 27, 2012 @ 9:47 pm

  12. You always have such amazing photos, and I got a kick out of the surprise at the end!


    Comment by Mama's Empty Nest — June 27, 2012 @ 1:51 pm

    • I love the surprises that come along too, although I don’t always get a decent photo of them. The frog was very patient (after his first great leap).


      Comment by montucky — June 27, 2012 @ 9:48 pm

  13. All are wonderful captures of unique flowers, and I especially like the lovely cascade flowers in the first photo. The toad is quite awesome too. 🙂


    Comment by Anna Surface — June 27, 2012 @ 2:39 pm

    • That was the nicest display of twinflowers that I’ve seen: they are having a very good year!


      Comment by montucky — June 27, 2012 @ 9:49 pm

  14. Loved all the flowers, and Mr. Toad!


    Comment by sandy — June 27, 2012 @ 3:23 pm

    • Mr. Toad had his very own flower garden. It should be an excellent place for him, with lots of insects and plenty of places for cover.


      Comment by montucky — June 27, 2012 @ 9:51 pm

  15. I love “that guy”. He was a nice surprise at the end of a string of beautiful posies.


    Comment by Kim — June 27, 2012 @ 3:53 pm

    • Nice specimen, isn’t he! He startled me when he hopped: he’s quite large and heavy and makes a pretty good sound when he lands.


      Comment by montucky — June 27, 2012 @ 9:52 pm

  16. love the foam flowers. They’re magic.


    Comment by Tammy — June 27, 2012 @ 7:03 pm

    • I think they are the fairy dust of the woods, tiny, bright and sparkly.


      Comment by montucky — June 27, 2012 @ 9:53 pm

  17. As usual, your photos are exquisite Terry! I enjoy them each and every time. You give me great inspiration. 🙂


    Comment by bayphotosbydonna — June 27, 2012 @ 9:17 pm

    • Thanks Donna. I greatly enjoy yours too! There are just so many terrific things to see in the world of nature, aren’t there!


      Comment by montucky — June 27, 2012 @ 9:56 pm

  18. We truly live in a magical fairyland of wonderful things. and so many don’t know that. I’m glad you’re here, recording it, reminding us. Pure magic.


    Comment by Teresa Evangeline — June 28, 2012 @ 9:32 am

    • The world of the undisturbed forest, far from the roads is indeed a magical place, the world as it was meant to be; the real world. Tonight I’m lookiong forward to a trek into a high roadless area in the morning. Life is good!


      Comment by montucky — June 28, 2012 @ 9:29 pm

  19. Such delicate little beauties and then I got to the toad..Well he is kind of cute!


    Comment by Roberta — June 28, 2012 @ 11:55 am

    • I thought the toad should get a little attention too. After all, I was in his home.


      Comment by montucky — June 28, 2012 @ 10:25 pm

  20. The Twinflower is quite striking!


    Comment by Watching Seasons — June 28, 2012 @ 2:06 pm

    • They are pretty just on a single stem or in a large group like these. They are never noticed until they bloom and then they are a delight.


      Comment by montucky — June 28, 2012 @ 10:27 pm

  21. Hi Montucky, Lovely flowers as is usual for your photographs. I also just love that Toad. Nice. Have a wonderful day tomorrow!


    Comment by wildlifewatcher — June 28, 2012 @ 6:33 pm

  22. so many gorgeous peaks at the tiny beings of the forest
    thank you, so wonderful.


    Comment by Tammie — June 28, 2012 @ 10:45 pm

    • I am continually amazed (and thankful for) at all of those tiny things. Finding and enjoying them helps to offset some of the unpleasant realities in today’s world.


      Comment by montucky — June 29, 2012 @ 8:45 pm

  23. Enjoyable flower photos. My favorite photos are the first and the last. I appreciate all that You have done to present these to us.


    Comment by Sartenada — June 28, 2012 @ 10:46 pm

    • I’m very glad to know that you enjoy seeing them, Matti! They are things that I love very much.


      Comment by montucky — June 29, 2012 @ 8:48 pm

  24. Those twinflowers are something: looks like they let you double your fun.


    Comment by Steve Schwartzman — June 29, 2012 @ 3:15 am

    • They do. The are tiny but they can really brighten up a piece of trail and they strike me in much the same way many birds do: small examples of optimism.


      Comment by montucky — June 29, 2012 @ 8:50 pm

  25. Is a whuzzit anything like a snipe? Nice photos yet again!!


    Comment by kcjewel — June 30, 2012 @ 2:28 pm

    • Seems to be, although I think snipe hunting might be more fruitful.


      Comment by montucky — June 30, 2012 @ 7:18 pm

  26. What kind of toad is he? He’s a fine looking specimen. Beautiful flowers too.


    Comment by Finn Holding — July 5, 2012 @ 1:11 am

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