Thursday, July 30, 2009
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
Gomphrena globosa - I love these flashy little purple globes.
They are native to Panama and Guatemala. They do well in full sun
in the ground or in a container. My ten year olds were beginning
to flag so I bought some new ones that are thriving.
Monday, July 27, 2009
Friday, July 24, 2009
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
We bought a $9 humming bird feeder
and attached it to the deck rail at Solitude.
We then enjoyed the show for the rest of our stay.
Humming birds (Trochillidae) are among the world's
smallest birds. They can flap their wings 12-90 times
per second and can fly at 34 miles per hour. They
are the only birds that can fly backwards.
Monday, July 20, 2009
Saturday, July 18, 2009
Snow Buttercup Ranunculus adoneus. Snow buttercups exhibit suntracking or heliotropism.
The stalks of the flower move with the sun carrying the flower heads and this occurs because of
differential cell growth. The stalks bend eastward in the morning and gradually unbend during
the course of the day. Photoreception occurs in the middle region of the stalk 1-3 cm below the
flower. This is due to 40% increased growth on the shaded side of the stalk and corresponds
to significantly longer epidermal cells on that side in contrast to the sunlit side.
Yarrow (Achillea millefolium) It has multiple folk names
including Gordaldo, nosebleed plant, old man's pepper,
Sanguinary, Milfoil, soldiers woundwort, and thousand
The most interesting name came from my son Gordon's
mother-in-law. Joanie who grew up in Leadville Colorado
related that when she was 5 or 6 the other kids called it
Pissy Plant because if you picked it you would pee your
bed that night.
Friday, July 17, 2009
Nuphar luteum polysepalla Also spatterdock
and cow lily. The flower is a solitary hermaphrodite
pollinated by insects. The stalks are connected to
underground sterms with roots called rhizomes.
These can multiply forming new rhizomes creating
This lily is on Nymph Lake above Bear Lake in RMNP.
Thursday, July 16, 2009
Lanceleaf Chiming Bells - Mertensia lanceolata These alpine bluebells
are low growing with narrow elongated leaves that have prominent
center veins and are differentiated from tall chiming bells which are on
a tall spindly stem. These were photographed on a hike at the foot of
Lumpy Ridge in Estes Park. 7-16-09
Tuesday, July 14, 2009
Adenolinium lewisii. These beautiful sky
blue flowers were by the trail that I walked each morning
by Fish Creek Road in Estes Park. The flowers open each
morning and close by noon. I found this out when I went
one day to photograph them after lunch and could not find them
but they were there again the next morning. After the
blooming season each flower forms a globoid seed capsule.
They reproduce by re-seeding. It is named after Meriwether
Lewis as it was found on the Voyage of Discovery - the Lewis
and Clark Expedition, in 1806.
Monday, July 13, 2009
Pentaphylloides floribunda. Also Potentilla In the rose
family. Potentilla is from the Latin powerful. Cinquefoil refers
to five leaves. The five petaled flower was a symbol of strength,
power, honor, and loyalty and representations appeared as early as
1033 in France. This was 2 years before the reign of William the
Clementsia rhodantha - Also rose crown. Stonecrop family.
Thrive in wet alpine and subalpine meadows and tundra.
Rhodantha is Greek for rose flower. Queens Crown is rounded
on top and deep to light rose in color and Kings Crown is flatter
on top and maroon to iridescent red/black.
These flowers were in a wet meadow by the Long Lake Trail
in the Colorado Indian Peaks wilderness area.
(Castilleja Also Prairie-Fire.
The flowers are edible and sweet and were consumed
as a condiment with other fresh greens by American
Indians. Some tribes used the plant to treat venereal
This flower is from the Long Lake Trail in the Indian
Peaks Wilderness Area south west of Estes Park
Colorado. I had some in my garden last year.
Bistorta bistortoides - Buckwheat family
Dense cylindrical clusters of minute flowers found
in alpine meadows. The powdered root has been used
as a powerful astringent to treat canker sores and sore
throats as well as dysentery, irritable bowel syndrome
and as a douche for excessive vaginal bleeding. I have
not used it so far.
Sunday, July 12, 2009
Verbascum thapsus It has many names
including Great Mullein, Velvet Wort, Hig Candlewick, Adams rod.
Felt wort, Hare's beard, Ice leaf, Beggar's blanket, Flannel,
Wooly wort, Shepard's staff, and more. It is a hardy biennial
which produces a rosette of leaves the first year and a tall stem
with dense flowers in the second year and then it dies. It requires
winter dormancy before it flowers. the dormancy is linked to
starch degradation in the root which is activated by low temperatures.
Flowers bloom for a single day opening in the morning and closing
in the afternoon.
This is one of the first wildflowers in our garden many years ago.
Saturday, July 11, 2009
Friday, July 10, 2009
Thursday, July 9, 2009
Silene acaulis - In the Magnolia class. The small pink wildflowers
arise in a domed cushion which has a solid long taproot.It is common
on the tundra of the high arctic and the rocky Mountains. I have seen it
often on my arctic canoe trips. It displays "compass flowering" with the
flowers developing initially on the south face of the cushion and later on
the north side.
Our photographer son Chris came to Estes Park
and we drove up Trail Ridge Road. Chris took this
image of a most contented marmot lying in the sun
on a warm rock.
Marmots are in the squirrel family (genus Marmota).
Also woodchuck, ground hog, and whistle pig. They live
in burrows in the rocks and hibernate there through the
winter. They are highly social and communicate using
loud whistles. They eat grasses,berries, lichens,roots,
Eriogonum umbellatum - Buckwheat family. Eriogonum is Greek for
wooly knee which describes the wooly leaves and swollen joints of the plant. The long
lasting flowers start out as red tinted bulbs turning to umbellate shaped yellow flowers and
dry into reds and oranges. The leaves also turn into red in the fall.