Montana Outdoors

June 26, 2018

Catching up ~ 1

I have been trying to post photos of the various wildflower species found in this region this spring but I’ve gotten behind. This will be the first of three posts of the species I didn’t mean to ignore. Each is unique and pretty in its own right.

Feathery false lily-of-the-valley, Plumed solomon's seal

Feathery false lily-of-the-valley, Plumed solomon's seal

Feathery false lily-of-the-valley, Plumed solomon’s seal ~ maianthemum racemosum

Tall Western Groundsell

Tall Western Groundsell ~ senecio integerrimus

Starry false lily-of-the-valley, Star-flowered solomon's-seal

Starry false lily-of-the-valley, Star-flowered solomon’s-seal ~ maianthemum stellatum

Lemon Weed, Western Gromwell

Lemon Weed, Western Gromwell ~ lithospermum ruderale

Prickly Currant

Prickly Currant ~ ribes lacustre

Field Chickweed

Field Chickweed ~ cerastium arvense

Alaska Saxifrage

Alaska Saxifrage ~ saxifraga ferruginea

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May 28, 2017

A few more

A short hike as a retreat from a hot afternoon revealed a few more wildflowers in bloom, and a few drops of rain helped provide a cool break.

Pointedtip Mariposa Lily

Pointedtip Mariposa Lily ~ Calochortus apiculatus. About the size of a 50 cent piece.

Early Blue Violet

Early Blue Violet ~ Viola adunca

Feathery False Lily of the Valley

Feathery False Lily of the Valley ~ Maianthemum racemosum. The blossom is about 4 inches tall.

Silvery Lupine

Silvery Lupine ~ Lupinus argenteus. This one is about a foot tall.

Starry False Lily-of-the-valley

Starry False Lily-of-the-valley ~ Maianthemum stellatum. This blossom is about 3 inches tall.

Blue Speedwell

Blue Speedwell ~ Veronica anagallis-aquatica. Quite a name for a blossom only 1/8 inch wide!

May 26, 2014

Wildflowers in the rain

Pointedtip Mariposa Lily, Three-spot Mariposa Lily

Pointedtip Mariposa Lily, Three-spot Mariposa Lily, Baker’s Mariposa ~ Calochortus apiculatus

Woolly Groundsel

Woolly Groundsel ~ Packera cana

Poison Larkspur

Poison Larkspur ~ Delphinium trolliifolium

Yellow Salsify, Meadow Goatsbeard

Yellow Salsify, Meadow Goatsbeard ~ Tragopogon dubius

Howell's Pussytoes

Howell’s Pussytoes ~ Antennaria howellii

Choke Cherry

Choke Cherry ~ Prunus Virginiana

Mountain Lady's Slipper

Mountain Lady’s Slipper ~ Cypripedium montanum

Antelope Bitterbrush

Antelope Bitterbrush, Antelope-brush ~ Purshia tridentata

Rydberg's Penstemon

Rydberg’s Penstemon ~ Penstemon rydbergii

Starry False Lily-of-the-valley, Star-flowered Solomon's-seal

Starry False Lily-of-the-valley, Star-flowered Solomon’s-seal ~ Maianthemum stellatum

Smallflower Miterwort

Smallflower Miterwort, Side-flowered Mitrewort, Cross-shaped Mitrewort ~ Ozomelis stauropetala

Feathery False Lily-of-the-valley, Plumed Solomon's Seal

Feathery False Lily-of-the-valley, Plumed Solomon’s Seal, Plumed Spikenard ~ Maianthemum racemosum

The thing about photographing wildflowers is that you have to be there when they are blooming, which means lots and lots of trips into the woods, the meadows, the trails and along the streams – sunshine or rain. That’s my story and I’m stickin’ to it!

May 19, 2013

An hour on the Spring Creek trail

A little spare time in the late afternoon, a short drive, cool green shade and flowers.

Scarlet Indian Paintbrush

Scarlet Indian Paintbrush, Castilleja miniata

Kinnikinnik

Kinnikinnik, Arctostaphylos uva-ursi

Howell's pussytoes

Howell’s pussytoes, Antennaria howellii

Woodland Strawberry

Woodland Strawberry, Fragaria vesca

Yellow Coralroot

Yellow Coralroot, Corallorhiza trifida

This encounter made my day! It was the first time that I’ve encountered this saprophytic orchid. Its greenish tinge suggests that it may be capable of manufacturing at least a part of its food to supplement its normal diet of decaying organic material.

Smallflower Miterwort

Smallflower Miterwort, Mitella stauropetala

Heart-leaf Arnica

Heart-leaf Arnica, Arnica cordifolia

Early Blue Violet

Early Blue Violet, Viola adunca

Star-flowered Solomon's-seal

Star-flowered Solomon’s-seal, Maianthemum stellatum

Feathery False Lily-of-the-valley

Feathery False Lily-of-the-valley, maianthemum racemosum

Western Gromwell

Western Gromwell, Lithospermum ruderale

May 23, 2011

Wildflowers of spring (4)

Heart-leaved Arnica

Heart-leaved Arnica ~ Arnica cordifolia 5/16

Un-identified

Pretty, but I have been unable to identify it 5/16

Field Chickweed

Field Chickweed ~ Cerastium arvense 5/16

Leafy Spurge

Leafy Spurge ~ Euphorbia esula 5/17

This is a Eurasian introduction that has become a serious threat to rangeland. It is difficult to eradicate and is poisonous.

Star Solomon's Seal

Star Solomon’s Seal ~ Maianthemum stellatum 5/17

Oregon Grape

Oregon Grape ~ Mahonia aquifolium 5/17

I couldn’t resist posting another photo of this. I liked the setting among the other plants in a typical setting and these are blossoming just everywhere right now.

May 17, 2008

Fishin’s lousy!

Today, as it so often happens on the opening day of trout fishing here in Montana, the fishin’ gods favored the fish. I visited three different streams and didn’t even wet a fly. But that’s OK with me!

After a few days of warm weather, the snow melt has begun in earnest and the water in the first two streams I tried is higher and muddier than I have ever seen it: the forecast for next week though is much colder and maybe that will slow it down a bit. The mountains above these streams is where the Chippy Creek fire took place last summer and since I was in the area already, I paid a visit to the burned area, much of which is undergoing a salvage logging operation. The good news there is that I saw no evidence of erosion (in fact the streams that were coming down from where I visited were very clear), there is already quite a lot of grass already growing in most of the burn and I saw four species of wildflowers already blooming amidst the ashes. Nature’s resilience is already hard at work!

On the third stream I returned to a beautiful spot that I visited just last week only to find that the rising water had completely covered the area from which I intended to fish. Oh, well, the surprise was only a mild one and Mother Nature made it up to me anyway because there the Syringa is in bloom

Syringa in bloom

and since it was lunch time I found a table all ready set up in this nice shady spot

Clark Fork River

already decorated with Starry false lily of the valley (or Starry false Solomon’s seal), Maianthemum stellatum.

Maianthemum stellatum

Maianthemum stellatum

Entertainment was provided by this pretty little visitor.

Blue butterfly

Blue butterfly

Maybe fishing wasn’t the real reason for my trip today after all: I must have been mistaken.

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