Montana Outdoors

April 12, 2015

Recent wildflower blooms

Despite the foibles of spring weather, our wildflowers are bound to begin their spring and summer cycle. Here are some of the newest:

Shooting Star

Shooting Star ~ Dodecatheon pulchellum

Arrow-leaved Balsamroot

Arrow-leaved Balsamroot ~ Balsamorhiza sagittata


Pear blossom

Nineleaf Biscuitroot

Nineleaf Biscuitroot ~ Lomatium triternatum

Serviceberry, Saskatoon

Serviceberry, Saskatoon

Serviceberry, Saskatoon

Serviceberry, Saskatoon

Serviceberry, Saskatoon ~ Amelanchier ainifolia


Kinnikinnik ~ Arctostaphylos uva-ursi

Oregon Grape

Oregon Grape ~ Mahonia aquifolium ~ Berberis aqufolium

April 21, 2013

Interesting day

After a heavy rain during the night there was a very light rain this morning and I found several more flowers blooming near the river.

Holboell's rockcress

Holboell’s rockcress, Boechera pendulocarpa ~ Arabis holboellii

Narrow-leaved Desert Parsley

Narrow-leaved Desert Parsley, Lomatium triternatum

And a member of the Saxifrage family that I have seen before but just now identified.

Peak Saxifrage

Peak Saxifrage

Peak Saxifrage, Micranthes nidifica

Soon after these photos were take it began to snow…. hard! Five hours later and after about five inches of heavy, wet snow it looked like this:

April snow

After taking the previous photo I headed back to the house, then instead of going in, decided to hike down near the river and perhaps get an interesting photo in the storm. On the way, about a quarter of a mile from the house I heard a loud crack and looked toward the sound just in time to see a large dead pine tree fall across the highway. I headed straight for it to stop and direct traffic and perhaps remove enough of the tree to permit traffic flow. There was too much tree on the road, but a pickup stopped and two men got out to help, leaving their truck with flashers on to block the lane that was completely blocked by the tree. I jogged back to the house for my chain saw while they directed traffic. When I returned it took just a few minutes for the three of us to cut enough of the tree to clear the roadway and get traffic moving again. I’m glad the tree didn’t wait until dark to fall!

Down tree

An interesting day!

April 17, 2010

Other early blooms

It has been dry and rather cold this spring in this region and the regular bloom times for wildflowers seems to be greatly disrupted. Some are scarce and I’m afraid some will not bloom at all this year. There is practically no moisture in the soil. Here are a few that I’ve seen in the past few days and their populations are very low.

Small-flowered Blue-eyed Mary~ Small-flowered Blue-Eyed Mary, Collinsia parviflora, figwort family ~

Wayside gromwell~ Wayside gromwell, Lemonweed, Lithospermum ruderale, borage family ~

Western stickseed~ Western stickseed, Lappula redowskii, borage family ~

 Narrow-leaved Desert Parsley~ Narrow-leaved Desert Parsley, Lomatium triternatum, Cous, carrot family ~

Mule-ears~ Mule-ears, Wyethia amplexicaulis, aster family ~
(In a few days, this will look like a medium-size sunflower)

Wild strawberry~ Wild strawberry, Fragaria virginiana, rose family ~

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