A collection of flora from the pacific wonderland.

Cascades

Cardwell’s Penstemon (Penstemon cardwellii)

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Boundary Trail, Mt. St. Helen’s National Park, WA,  6/2018.

Yet another brilliantly colored Penstemon, P. cardwellii thrives in thin sandy soils, like the northwest side of Mt. St. Helen’s, where we found a stunning display.  (more…)


Sticky Cinquefoil (Potentilla glandulosa)

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Badger Creek Wilderness, OR, 5/2016.

In the early 2000s, through DNA identification and global research advances, a few of the Cinquefoils, including this common lower elevation meadow flower, were moved from the Potentilla genus to the new Drymocallis genus. To date all three Drymocallis species’ share the trait of being  ‘protocarnivorous.’ (more…)


Vanilla Leaf (Achlys triphylla)

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Three Corner Rock Trail, Skamania County, WA, 5/2020.

It’s nearly impossible to hike in the Cascades without recognizing large drifts of this common plant in the understory, but nearly as rare is seeing it in bloom.  (more…)


Bastard Toadflax (Comandra umbellata)

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Weldon Wagon Road Trail, Klickitat County, WA .5/2020.

This native flowering plant is one we often see on spring hikes in the Columbia River Gorge, (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…)


Oregon Geranium (Geranium Oreganum)

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

We found these large purple flowers in alluring sun-spotted drifts while hiking this summer in the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument along the Pacific Crest Trail.  (more…)


Roundleaf Alumroot (Heuchera Cylindrica)

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Tygh Creek Trail, Badger Creek Wilderness, OR, 5/2016.

Roundleaf Alumroot is a demure relative of the bold colored Heucheras one finds in home gardens. (more…)


Idaho Blue-eyed Grass (Sisyrinchium idahoense)

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Willow Creek Nature Preserve, Eugene, OR, 5/2016.

This is the most common of the bashful blue-eyed grasses we encounter, (more…)


Farewell to Spring (Clarkia amoena)

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Tire Mountain, Willamette National Forest, OR, 7/2019.

Often seen growing amid browning grasses from drying soil, this lovely flower gets its common name from the fact that it appears as many spring blooms are dying back, often carpeting full hillsides.    (more…)


Striped Coralroot (Corallorhiza striata)

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Hamilton Mountain Trail, Columbia Gorge, WA, 4/2015.

We find coral roots, except for this striped species, faithful companions that reward those that closely scan the pine-needle  floors throughout the wilderness areas of the Pacific Northwest. (more…)


Royal Jacob’s ladder (Polemonium carneum)

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Cone Peak Trail, Willamette National Forest, OR, 6/2016.

We rarely see this flower in full bloom, and then hardly ever without an insect of some sort on its lovely petals.  (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…)


Turkey Peas (Orogenia fusiformis)

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Cone Peak, Willamette National Forest, OR, 6/2017.

This small and humble flower is often one of the earliest we find on hikes in the eastern gorge, and could be around now in places like the Dalles Mountain Ranch and Seven-Mile Hill west of The Dalles, (more…)


Varied-leaf Collomia (Collomia heterophylla)

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Glacier Lake Trail, Goat Rocks Wilderness, Gifford Pinchot NF, WA, 6/2018.

The Varied-leaf Collomia is a much smaller sibling to the previously-posted Grandiflora collomia. Although their tiny sweet pink flowers (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…)


Fuzzy-tongue Penstemon (Penstemon eriantherus v. argillosus)

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Iron Mountain, Willamette National Forest, OR, 6/2016.

These fuzzy-tongue penstemon, display amazing markings to guide pollinators to their nectar.  (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…)


Washington Twinpod (Physaria alpestris)

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Burnt Mountain Trail, William O. Douglas Wilderness, WA 6/2018.

This uncommon, low-lying member of the mustard family, also known as bladderpod, is found in dry sandy soil.  (more…)


Sitka Mistmaiden (Romanzoffia sitchensis)

 

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Mary’s Peak, Siuslaw National Forest, 6/2016.

The common name “mistmaiden” is surely appropriate for these delightful flowers. (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…)