June 13, 2011

Wildflowers in the Foothills

Balsamorhiza sagittata
Balsamroot is a familiar plant,
Balsamorhiza hookeri
but I never realized there was a second species with leaves that look completely different. (In the lower left of the above photo you will also see Deathcamas's white flower.)
? hybrid balsamroot ?
I thought the plant with the pinnate leaves had to be something other than balsamroot until I noticed a hybrid with leaf characteristics of both species!
Gee, isn't botany fun?!  And confusing, a lot of the time.
We have seen the above flower many times, but couldn't identify it. I think I finally have the genus name right. I'm not even going to attempt to add a species name.
We had not seen this one before.  It looks a lot like bitterroot, state flower of Montana.  Indeed, the genus turns out to be the same. 
All of the above photos were taken in early June on the south slopes of the Uintas,7200-8500 ft.


  1. Beautiful. Now I'll have to look up to see whether Merriweather Lewis first identified it. :)

  2. It's fun to tune into the plants and flowers. I have to do better at that.

  3. Oh wow, who would think those are wild. So pretty! :)

  4. Botany can be fun as long as I don't have to key things out. Much better to take photos and ID later visually.

    Sure hope I get out to hunt wildflowers before they disappear. Summer is on it's way now with 75/41.

  5. Botany is fun - and your photos are just beautiful.

  6. I love the Cryptantha....it has hairy (cute) leaves!!!

  7. The wildflowers west of the Rockies are often very different from the ones in the East.

    I'm very jealous that Lewisia is a wildflower in Utah. I have tried to grow it several times in my scree garden. It;s beautiful the first year...lives through the winter and then dies before blooming again!

  8. There is nothing like wildflowers when they start blooming. Great series of pictures.

  9. Pretty wildflowers! It is fun and challenging to identify wildflowers from pictures. It really helps to include the leaves in the pictures like you did.

  10. beautiful, we are heading out to camp in a couple of weeks. I hope the flowers are still blooming.

  11. Loved seeing the Lewisia, Janie, and I can't believe your Death Camus is blooming already!

  12. Very nice flower postings. Since I go to the desert often you would think I would remember all of their names. Is the Cyptantha the "white forget me not"? Not sure about it. I will be checking back to see what you are up to.

  13. Lovely splashes of color! As for botany...I will just let you do the work adn I will copy. I have never been good at it. I am quite simple-minded when it comes to science....like: "Oh! Look at the pretty yellow flower":))



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