june wildflowers (except three…)


Here are the wildflowers new to my yard. I expected some that didn’t show up and was surprised by a couple that I just didn’t expect. I suppose that just might be the neatest part of the hunting of these flowers. You never know what you might find.

I wanted to start with this flower because it really makes only “a bit” of sense. When I took the photo I found it down by the creek. I think I may have mentioned that this area has actually been actively occupied for over 9000 years. The hubby, the pups and I wandered down to the creek and while I was being eaten alive by mosquitoes, I captured a photo of this flower.

I thought perhaps it might actually be a wild iris until I researched the subject and found that instead it was indeed planted. Because it’s a beardless one it’s rather invasive plant. (Iris pseudacoris) That being the case if you are to find it in the “wild” then your probably looking at an old homesteading site – this is probably enhanced by the fact that it was about 15 feet away from our hand dug well.

You would think that this means it’s actually close to my house but nothing could be further from the truth. I cannot talk about the well without quite a bit of heartburn however; let me say that the well is dug about a mile and a half away from the house, down by the creek. I had always kind of thought that perhaps there was a homestead site down there however, this if not an actual confirmation, it perhaps provides an interesting tidbit of information that may lead to such a conclusion. So, this is flower one that actually is not a native wildflower.

This flower was a surprise just because I do not ever recall seeing it before however it comes across as so pastel that perhaps I may have missed it in the past.

Threadleaf Fleabane (Erigeron filifolius var. filifolius)

Red Clover (Trifolium pratense) As pointed out, again with Adam’s help, (see below) this commonly isn’t native, so this would (probably) be non-native, that makes flower number two lacking the wildflower status. Oh yes, and let me add, it’s identity is questionable at best.

I think that my id’ing of this flower is probably correct. The next two there are quite a few that look similar. These ones look a bit like fennel however they don’t have the distinct leaves that fennel does and their tops are very rounded. It took weeks for the flowers to actually open so I could get a shot and then I got lucky capturing it with a complimentary bug.

Desert Pincushion (Chaenactis stevioides)

There are two species of vetch that this plant may fall under. There is cow vetch, which has hairless stems, and then there is wooly vetch which does. I’m inclined to go with cow vetch as the type only because I’ve noticed in plant lingo usually when they say wooly it’s very wooly. However, I could be completely incorrect here.

Now I must note that as was pointed out to me by Adam

(website: http://adampaul.wordpress.com/)

That this vine is actually non-native and thus cannot be counted as a wildflower, or at minimum not a local wildflower, so non-wildflower number three. I really should have organized this much better! *phew*

Cow Vetch (Vicia cracca)

I fell madly in love with this one;

Blanket Flower (Gaillardia aristata)

And lastly, once again, one of the flowers I found was identified by a friend of mine as Cinquefoil. (Potentilla simplex)


I sincerely appreciate it because I really was looking like mad to find the identity of this mysterious flower. To find it on his page was neat. I found a lot of really interesting facts about this particular plant including that it has been used in witchcraft as an ingredient to make a love potion. (Not a very pleasant one at that because it included the fat of children dug up from the grave.) 

And you can read a few of other tidbits on the flower are in our comments on his blog – not to mention see some fabulous photos of some flowers that you would find in the Rockies.



15 Responses to “june wildflowers (except three…)”

  1. 1 montucky

    You have some very good photos here, aulloori! You’ve been busy. Nice work!

    Great color on the iris. We have only the purple at home, but there are some of the yellow in the valley. We even have a huge one that, believe it or not, was in my wife’s mother’s garden in Denver, bulbs went with us to Phoenix and bloomed there and now here in Montana. Pretty tough plant!

    I’ve looked for that color in the Fleabane, but haven’t come close around here. As close as I’ve seen is very pale. That’s really pretty!

    Very nice look at the Vetch! Good color in that one.

    You’re right about the Blanket Flower. It’s really pretty.

    That’s an excellent shot of the Cinquefoil too, especially with the second bloom on the buds. They’re a gorgeous flower, aren’t they?

    Really nice assortment!

  2. Thanks Montucky & thanks for the cinquefoil id!

    I posted quite a few of them but wanted to make it worth anyone’s while who happened to come by.

    Today when I wandered down the creek I noticed that the yellow iris follows it all along the banks – there were a lot more than when I first took the shot. I’m thinking maybe an old flowerbed was washed out by the creek at one time? (well, it’s another possiblity) In Minnesota this species is so invasive it’s actually illegal to plant. (the beardless yellow ones only) I agree it’s a tough plant! I’ve always adored them and ours (purple iris’ too) haven’t even come up this year yet! (we are having odd weather this year)

    Anything purple and yellow I struggle to gain the photo to the degree I like… I must have taken a dozen shots of the vetch. (What a horrid name for such a pretty vine!) This one I finally felt offered some jutice to a really pretty flower. I never walked away from the cinquefoil looking how I wanted – in real life it’s much prettier and I think your shot is as well. ahh well one day I’ll master those darn yellows!

    I kept wondering why there was clover at all what with all the deer prints on the property!

  3. 3 montucky

    Yes, you’d think you might be able to smell the clover on the deer’s breath. They missed one!

    On the Blanket Flower… You’ve really got me going on that one. When I saw your photo it reminded me that I had caught a glance of something like that up the hill a ways and well off the road. For some reason I didn’t visit it until I saw your photo, but tracked it down tonight and took a profile shot of it. I’ll post it tonight. Does yours have the same profile, or am I seeing a different phase in the flower cycle?

  4. Yours is so lovely!!! I looked at it on your flickr site. Actually there are quite a few blanketflowers – (slender, great, basic) yours looks a lot like great to me and then yours also looks a bit like “Greeneyes” (Berlandiera lyrata) too. They are all very close relatives (aster) and chances are calling it blanketflower hits in the ballpark. Your flower is much prettier than mine! (tho together they would make a stunning arrangment in a vase!!) Hey, if we went into the floral bizz we’d probably make a killing on exotic flowers! :o)

  5. That’s a lovely photograph of Aster Fleabane! The two closed buds next to the open one give a good sense of balance.

    I treat clovers like lupine – too hard to separate in many cases 🙂 My excuse for them is that most are non-native anyways. At least that’s my story and I’m sticking to it!

    I always thought “vetch” was a good name for an invasive non-native vine :-P~~ Your does indeed look like V. cracca.

    That blanket flower is quite lovely – I’ve never seen an aster like that!

  6. Again, I must commend you here. Excellent, and truly, magnificently, beautiful photographs!
    I really loves the first, the last, and the purple flower in between.

    I, too, tremendously love nature. In fact, nature, along with music, is probably one of the first things I ever fell in love with! Even though I myself have spent enormous amounts of time taking photographs (somehow don’t get the time these days, and plus the weather is not conducive to it!), but still, I have never been able to stop myself from being awe-inspired each and every single time I look at nature’s exhilarating beauty!
    And you have done, as usual, a tremendous job here!

    BTW, I really liked what you said while initiating this post: you never know what you may find.
    That is just so true! And one of the most exciting things about this whole thing!

  7. P.S. Though my mom is a botanist; and hence obviously decent in taxonomy; but my classification and identification of different plants/flowers by their nomenclature or even common names sucks badly!

    So sorry for referring to them as “the first, the last and the purple flower in between!” 😉

  8. I have to agree separating clovers is a real bear – according to one website you’re looking at about 300 species… eeek! I’m sure some bi-speckled man in a white lab coat can separate them but not I!

    Now after reading your comment I decided to relook over that fleabane and yep, it’s wrong. (Right species; Thread-leaf fleabane: Erigeron filifolius var. filifolius) I had a feeling you knew that. 🙂

    I didn’t know vetch was non-native heck, I should have titled this wildflowers(except three)? not counting clover, iris and vetch! :o) Actually I will alter it..

    Thanks for your comments Adam – they helped me out quite a bit!!! Ummm… pardon I’ve a bit of editing to do…

  9. Hi Narziss,

    Thanks for stopping by! You don’t have to be apologetic how you refer to the flowers – I appreciate your attendance and comments at the “arm-chair” botanist meeting. Learning the names is an obsessive compulsive thing I am trying to do. It makes me sound so much more intelligent on the hikes with the my kiddos! :o) I’m pretty lucky to have a camera that I both understand and I can play with a bit. I make some form or attempt to just show them the way they look. (Not that I don’t play with other means of taking photos for my wall, black and white, sepia and etc… but online I just make an attempt to show the beauty I get to see all the time.) Oh and as a side note; my primary motivation? I just like looking at them. Sometimes I think I should stand back a bit more and see the world in less detail – I’m so busy as of late noticing the little things that I can’t seem to find time to step back!! :o)

  10. 10 fairycross

    Amazing photos! They really are. You must have an excellent quality camera! The colours are so vidid! Beautiful! I hope you don`t mind but I would love to add you to one of my favourites on my wordpress blog!?

    Guess what?! I had a visit this morning from my Fallow friend again 😀 This time I got up close and personal with him! I managed to get some close ups. I wish I had a better quality camera. I only have a Nikon Coolpix 2.0 Megapixel cam!

    Check out my blog and also my flickr link on there to see soem more!

  11. O’ Fairy I’m honored – of course you can link me anyway you’d like – not to mention you can find any of my photos on a flickr site and me personally, I don’t mind them being uploaded and used at all however anyone likes. Your fallow deer is a beauty! I love how he still has his velvet on his antlers. Rarely do I see a good photo of that! Nice shot! (I keep hoping one day I can get one of ours, we have whitetail, mule and another unknown species over here, so far no luck with the velvet however.. darn!) For anyone who’d like to take a gander at her photo of her deer here is the link;

    He is a beauty! http://fairycross.wordpress.com/2007/06/14/a-beautiful-fallow-deer-in-our-back-garden-today/

    p.s. any of my bird photos clicked will take you to my flickr site.

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  1. 1 Blanket Flower « Montana Outdoors

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