Montana Outdoors

May 26, 2016

Bear Grass ~ Xerophyllum tenax

Filed under: Wildflowers — Tags: , , , , — montucky @ 9:19 am

Bear Grass

Bear Grass

Bear Grass

Bear Grass

Bear Grass

Bear-Grass is the only evergreen member of the lily family. Its flowering stems grow from off-shoot plants growing at the base of each “grassy” clump and appear at each plant every five to ten years. The flowers are large (approximately 3” X 4”), blooming at the tops of stalks that are around four and a half feet tall. The genus name comes from the Greek word xeros meaning “dry,” and phyllon meaning “leaf” and the species name tenax means “holding fast”, referring to the tough pliable leaves which were used by the indigenous people to make ornamental baskets. The plant is poisonous although some think that bears eat the fleshy leaf bases in the spring. I’ve never seen bears eat it, but I have seen grassy bases that have been severely disturbed in the spring. The plant is native to six of the far western states in the U.S. and the two western provinces of Canada and in this area usually likes elevations over about 5,000 feet.

You can find a wealth of information on them here .

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May 23, 2016

Sticky Geranium

Filed under: Wildflowers — Tags: , , , — montucky @ 10:36 am

sticky purple geranium

From “Montana.plant-life.org”:

Medicinal Uses:
The whole plant is astringent, salve and has agents that check bleeding by contracting blood vessels. Herbalists have used geranium roots to stop bleeding and to treat sores and chapped lips. It was used medicinally by the Blackfoot Indians among others. They used an infusion from this plant to treat diarrhea and gastric upset and urinary irritations. A gargle was used in the treatment of sore throats. The root of this plant is astringent and was dried and powdered and used by Native Americans to stop external bleeding. An infusion of the leaves or the roots has been used as a wash for sore eyes.

May 20, 2016

Mountain lady’s slipper

mountain lady's slipper

This species of this small orchid is native only to 6 western states, Alaska and western Canada..

May 18, 2016

One wouldn’t think this was a lily!

feathery false lily-of-the-valley, plumed solomon's seal,

Feathery false lily-of-the-valley. This is a member of the lily family, but its flowers are certainly different from the other white colored members of the family.

May 17, 2016

Almost missed the violets

Filed under: Wildflowers — Tags: , , , , — montucky @ 8:38 pm

Early Blue Violet

These have been blooming for quite some time already, but this one was growing in the deep shade of the Spring Creek canyon. I think I broke all of the usual rules of correct exposure, but it worked and the photo is what I wanted.

June 27, 2014

The brightest thing in the forest right now

Filed under: Wildflowers — Tags: , , , — montucky @ 7:56 pm

Orange Honeysuckle

Orange Honeysuckle ~ Lonicera ciliosa

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