Yellow

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Mostly yellow and just a touch of green on a cloudy spring afternoon.

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Yellow bells ringing and although short and sometimes hidden in the grass they make a statement that is always bold.

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Arrow-leaf Balsamroot is just now riding into town and when in full abundance paints the fields with that sunny shade of yellow.

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Now on the wane yet still holding on the Biscuit root is one of those flowers inside a flower inside a flower. Fascinating to look at from macro to micro and back again.

Have a wonderful weekend.

Monument Plant: Frasera speciosa

This version of Green Gentain called Monument Plant or more specifically Frasera speciosa is one of our favorite wildflowers.

From it’s humble beginnings…

Monument plant grows into a beautiful, tall, cone shaped plant which produces innumerable intricate sculptural flowers each a work of art in their own right.

Frasera speciosa is also commonly called elkweed as it is good browsing material for both deer and elk but the little guys seem to find Monument Plant to their liking as well.

And to top it all off a couple of photographers find Green Gentian fascinating as well and never tire of photographing it when it appears in the open meadows and grasslands each spring.

Chocolate Lily

 

This year we have been lucky to find several of these wonderful Chocolate Lilies blooming on the trails nearby. I am a bit up in the air as to the specific species as two reliable websites list the chocolate lily as two species one being Fritillaria affinis var. affinis and the other lists the plant as Fritillaria atropurpurea.

The plant is fairly inconspicuous and without the flower not very showy at all. It is a beautiful plant and we were glad to come across it as according to Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center database it is one that frequently takes years off from flowering.

Yellow Bells:Fritillaria pudica

In addition to the Glacier Lillies carpeting the forest floor these small Yellow Bells, which are also in the Lilly family, have kept us company this spring. The plants are only 10-30cm tall and usually contain a single flower. They grow scattered in patches both in open areas as shown below and in more forested areas as well.

The bulb of yellowbells is edible, raw or cooked. It can also be dried for later use. Since it is rich in starch, it is best used in the autumn, however, many tribes picked them in May and boiled them alone or with bitterroot. The raw bulb tastes like potatoes, when cooked it tastes like rice. It can be eaten as a vegetable or be added to soups etc. Several tribes used them for food. The green seedpods can be eaten, boiled as a wild green, but are said to be bitter.

We found flowers that ranged from the typical yellow to some that were a deep orange.

A small treasure that springs from the ground and one to look forward to again.