A collection of flora from the pacific wonderland.

August

Olympic Mountain Aster (Aster paucicapitatus)

Olympic National Forest, WA 8/2020.

Aster is Greek for “star”. Fields of these mixed with purple Thistles (Cirsium edule) graced our hike up Mt. Ellinor this summer, where the flowers, not the views (hidden by fog), were the main event.

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Piper’s Bellflower (Campanula piperi)

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Olympic National Forest, WA, 8/2020.

A long car ride followed by a steep and crowded trail were suddenly made worthwhile when we spotted these endemic bellflowers growing in-between the rocks (more…)


Elmera (Elmera racemosa)

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Mt. Ellinor trail, Olympic National Forest, WA, 8/2020.

We often see these spikes of cream-colored bells on rocky peaks and ridges.  (more…)


American Speedwell (Veronica americana)

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Devil’s Rest Trail, Columbia River Gorge, OR, 7/2020.

We often encounter the tiny four-petaled blue flowers of the Veronica genus on our hikes in a variety of settings. (more…)


Mountain Sagewort (Artemesia norvegica)

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Tatoosh Ridge Trail, Gifford Pinchot National Forest, WA, 7/2020.

These Mountain Sageworts were mixed into the incredible flower fields we found on Tatoosh Ridge south of Mt. Rainier.  (more…)


Silverleaf Phacelia (Phacelia hastata)

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Upper Canyon Creek Meadows Trail, Mt. Jefferson Wilderness, OR, 7/2019.

We found this guy holding on amidst alpine scree and snow near the crest of central Oregon’s Three Fingered Jack this summer. (more…)


Toothed Owl’s Clover (Orthocarpus cuspidatus)

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Pacific Crest Trail, Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument, OR, 7/2019.

At one point in the spectacular Hobart Bluff-Soda Mountain section of the Pacific Crest Trail in the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument, we found the trailside covered in these pretty Owl’s clovers we had never seen before.  (more…)


Leatherleaf Saxifrage (Leptarrhena pyrolifolia)

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Bagley Creek, Mount Baker National Forest, WA, 7/2016.

We didn’t initial think this plant was a saxifrage because we mostly saw the red seed heads and stems, (more…)


Arrow-leaved Groundsel (Senecio triangularis)

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Mt. Hood, Vista Ridge Trail, OR, 8/2016.

One of the more common and easy to identify of the dizzying array of yellow composite flowers; we were surprised to find we hadn’t yet posted it.  (more…)


Northern Gentian (Gentianella amarella)

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Horseshoe Basin, Pasayten Wilderness, WA, 7/2016.

In Washington’s Mt. Baker area, we stumbled upon this gentian, a less common variety within the pacific northwest (more…)


Tolmie’s Saxifrage (Saxifraga tolmiei)

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Vista Ridge Trail, Mt. Hood Wilderness, OR, 8/2016.

Yet another of the many northwest saxifrage species; (more…)


American Sawwort (Saussurea americana)

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Home Sweet Home, Olympic National Park, WA, 8/2018.

If ever one needs a reminder that flowers exist to attract pollinators rather than for  human enjoyment, look no further than the homely sawwort.  (more…)


Rattlesnake Plantain (Goodyera oblongifolia)

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South Puyallup Trail, Mt Rainier National Park, WA, 7/2015.

This member of the orchid family is common in conifer woodlands across the west and northwest.  (more…)


Western False Asphodel (Tofieldia glutinosa)

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Along the banks of Royal Lake, Olympic N.P., WA, 7/2016.

We’ve probably mistaken these for Death Camas, Bistort, or Valerian on many occasions. (more…)


Spotted Saxifrage (Saxifraga bronchialis)

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Upper Royal Basin, Olympic National Park, 7/2016.

This less-common saxifrage variety can be identified by its matted, basal, rosette-shaped leaves (shared with the Tolmiei species) and its upright, red stems, but mainly by the yellow, orange and red spots on its petals.  (more…)


Nodding Onion (Allium cernuum)

Hardy Ridge Trail, Columbia Gorge, WA, 6/2015.

Hardy Ridge Trail, Columbia Gorge, WA, 6/2015.

We see three species of wild allium with some regularity on hikes in the Columbia Gorge and Cascades (more…)


Northern Monkshood (Aconitum delphinifolium)

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Lower Dewey Lake, Skagway, AK, 7/2017.

We’re posting this Northern Monkshood, found on the westside flower garden bordering Lower Dewey lake above Skagway, Alaska this summer, even though we’ve not yet posted the more common western columbianum Monkshood.   (more…)


Sidebells (Pyrola secunda)

Union Creek Trail,  William O. Douglas Wilderness, WA, 7/2014.

Union Creek Trail, William O. Douglas Wilderness, WA, 7/2014.

Although perhaps the least showy of the pyrolas, the tell-tale curved stalk is endearing when repeated in a grouping, explaining it’s common name of sidebells or one-sided wintergreen.     (more…)


Wood Nymph (Moneses uniflora)

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Deer Mountain Trail, Ketchikan, AK, 7/2017.

Some books put this plant in the Pyrola (wintergreen) genus, while others give it it’s own: Moneses. (more…)


Hooded Ladies Tresses (Spiranthes romanzoffiana)

Eden Park Trail, Mt. Hood Wilderness, OR, 8/2016.

Eden Park Trail, Mt. Hood Wilderness, OR, 8/2016.

We stumbled across this fen of Ladies Tress orchids in the moist alpine meadows of Mt. Hood’s north side in late August. (more…)


Fragrant Water Lily (Nymphaea odorata)

Hebo Lake State Park, OR, 6/2015.

Hebo Lake State Park, OR, 6/2015.

There are two species of water lily commonly found in northwest lakes and ponds:  the previously posted, and native yellow variety, Nuphar polysepalum, and this showier non-native.   (more…)


Cliff Paintbrush (Castilleja rupicola)

McCord Creek Falls, Columbia Gorge, OR, 4/2014.

McCord Creek Falls, Columbia Gorge, OR, 4/2014.

This is one of the easier paintbrush varieties to identify (more…)


Coneflower (Rudbeckia occidentalis)

Iron Mountain, OR, 7/2014.

Iron Mountain, OR, 7/2014.

Also called “Western Cone Flower” and “Western Chocolate Cone”.   (more…)


Mountain Owl’s Clover (Orthocarpus imbricatus)

Iron Mountain, OR, 7/2014.

Iron Mountain, OR, 7/2014.

None of the three different groups of flowers called “owl’s clover” are actually clovers.  (more…)