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Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Beargrass Season

Along with everything else this wacky summer, the beargrass began blooming a month early.


A typical beargrass "poof"

A tall clublike plant, whose flowers form a large white ball at it's very top, beargrass is known for growing in mountain meadows throughout the Western U.S.  Here in the Cascades, it usually reaches peak bloom by early July.  But....this year's strange weather pattern with it's unseasonable hot temperatures saw beargrass flowering by late May.


The head is composed of hundreds of tiny flowers

After my photo session at Panther Creek Falls, I drove over to nearby Falls Creek Falls, hoping to catch another waterfall in action.  But the midday sunshine was not conducive to photography, and all my images turned out lousy.  (I've decided to wait for a cloudy autumn day before returning.)  However, the silver lining to this otherwise nonproductive trip was a forest full of beargrass plumes.


Close up

A member of the corn lily family, beargrass is typically the first plant to sprout after a forest fire.  These lovely poofy plumes are common in forest clearings throughout the high Cascades.  Beargrass bloom in cycles, only reaching peak every five to seven years.


Extreme close up

I love beargrass and try not to miss peak bloom season.  It appears different regions of the PNW Cascades take turns having good beargrass years.  Last year, the forests around Central Oregon seemed to win the beargrass lottery.  This year, Mt. Hood and the surrounding forests of SW Washington sported the lion's share of blooming plants.


A favorite of bugs and people

I came away from this short hike with a dozen good photos of beargrass poofs - and some nice macro shots of their tiny flowers.


Sharing with:  Our World Tuesday

31 comments:

  1. Absolutely stunning, Linda! I love all the details you are showing in your lovely photos.

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  2. Interesting plant! I don't think we have that here in Virginia.

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  3. Thanks for showing us this wonder!

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  4. Really gorgeous shots of the beargrass. This is a mountain flower that I love as we have seen much of it in Glacier Park where we have done extensive hiking in the past. Love fields full of this. The best shots I have seen of this!

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  5. You captured the tiny flowers beautifully... not so easy to do!
    Great post, Linda!

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  6. I never heard of beargrass before. The things you learn reading these blogs! ;) Very nice images.

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  7. Nice they are. I have never seen one but imagine they are teeming with insects.

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  8. Hello Linda, the beargrass blooms are pretty. Beautiful captures, I love the macro shots!

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  9. Beautiful! I did not know it bloomed...but I can see why given its long cycle between blooms!

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  10. That's a very interesting plant and new to me. I don't like sunny days for landscapes either- nice high overcast is my favorite

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  11. Very pretty. I'll keep my eye out for it around here. :-)

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  12. Beautiful! Somedays the sun just doesn't cooperate, right now I don't even attempt a photo until about an hour before dark:)

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  13. Nature is so creative and you so clever to capture its beauty. Such a lovely creamy white.

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  14. Lovely plant I've never heard of before now.

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  15. very beautiful, from far looks like onion flower.

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  16. I've never heard of that,but it sure is pretty.

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  17. Great looking flower - this ones that are made of 1000s of smaller flowers are always worth a second look.

    Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

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  18. It's such an unusual plant! I'd heard of it but I've never seen it except in photos.

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  19. Hi! The beargrass flowers are very cool and interesting. Climbing Mt. Mauna Kea a few years ago, I found Haleakala silversword flowers. I was very impressed at that time. Looking at your photos,I remembered the impression at that time.
    Your water falls photos are very cool too in your former post. Thanks for sharing.

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  20. That's the neatest grass that I have ever seen. Tom The Backroads Traveller

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  21. I don't think I've ever seen that, but it looks awesome.

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  22. Well I've never seen bear grass before but it sure is pretty. Thanks for sharing.

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  23. Wow! Stunning pictures of the beargrass poofs. The macro shots of their tiny flowers are gorgeous too!
    Thanks for sharing!

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  24. Linda, I don't think we have Beargrass in the mountains of CO - at least I can't remember ever seeing it. It's quite unusual-looking. You did get great macros of it!

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  25. I love tiny flowers like that! The details are just beautiful.

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  26. beautiful. sure would love to see wide angle pics of it blooming if you have any.

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  27. I've enjoyed your Beargrass photos every year, keep em coming!

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