Beauty of It All
Showy lady's slipper (Cypripedium reginae). Photo by Thomas G. Barnes.
Let's take a closer look at the beauty and remarkable adaptations of wildflowers to their environment. Through a series of in-depth articles we will explore the remarkable adaptations of wildflowers to diverse environments and specialized habitats such as bogs, deserts, grasslands, vernal pools, alpine communities, and redwood forests. We will feature the remarkable strategies and unique adaptations wildflowers use to survive in harsh environments - succulence, parasitism, mimicry, chemical warfare, and mutualism. In these pages you will experience the wonder of plant-animal relationships and interactions such as unique pollination strategies, unique seed dispersal mechanisms, entrapment, and carnivory!
We will introduce you to the carnivorous plants of the United States, the cacti and other succulents of the Southwest deserts, the jewels of an old-growth forest floor, and the survivors of the alpine environments. You will be captivated by the wildflowers of rare and unusual plant communities such as bogs, vernal pools, serpentine and limestone endemics. The story of wildflowers is one of complexity, mystery, and splendor. So, please come back to this page often and you will find yourself astounded and delighted by THE BEAUTY OF IT ALL!
Aquilegia Express: Columbines
One of the most exquisite and most beloved wildflowers is the columbine. The magnificent rock-loving columbine brightens our hearts in cool, hidden forest grottos, and lifts our spirit high to alpine meadows and glacial mountain lakes.
All aboard, as we travel back in time following the development of columbines, interacting with different habitats and pollinators, while viewing their many beautiful colors along the way!
Read About Columbines »
Follow the Rainbow: Our Native Irises
Bold and sassy or shy and reserved, irises greet us in springtime with spectacular, large, beautiful, eye-catching flowers. Like a rainbow, they exhibit a variety of colorful patterns and hues from many shades of blue to violet, or a pale delicate white or yellow, earthy tans and browns, to a flaunting copper-red, a stately deep maroon and a brilliant yellow.
So travel with us as we follow the rainbow of our native irises.
Read About Our Native Irises »
Meet The Ladies: The Slipper Orchids
Did you know that in addition to the tall trees for which we are best known, a beautiful and sometimes hidden treasure of wondrous native orchids are on our National Forests and Grasslands?
They might have been one of our best kept secrets - but no more.
Meet The Ladies! »