After a somewhat slow start because of late snows in the high country of Colorado’s Rocky Mountains, the wildflower blooming season has finally arrived. My husband nature photographer, Bernie Nagy, and I made several short trips in June and witnessed some spectacular wildflower displays. In Crested Butte near Gothic we saw hillsides colored yellow with Glacier Lilies; and in the San Louis Valley, fields were covered with bright yellow Wallflowers. A local store employee in Villa Grove said, "I’ve lived here all my life and I haven’t seen the Wallflowers anywhere near as plentiful in ten years!"
Glacier Lilies and a Field of Wallflowers
Also at Rabbit Ears Pass, there were Glacier Lilies, yellow Buttercups and white Marsh Marigolds galore.
Tiny yellow Buttercups and Marsh Marigolds
Closer to home in South Park, Bernie and I are seeing Irises creating fields of blue. Also Loco has blanketed areas like snow. In the fields between Como and Jefferson, Indian Paintbrushes, Loco, Groundsel, and Fleabane are creating artistic patchworks of colors.
Irises and a field of wildflowers near Tarryall
At the beginning of June, Bernie was fortunate to see Fairy Slippers at Three-Mile Creek near Grant. This tiny member of the Orchid Family is difficult to spot as it hides among the debris on the forest floor around conifers.
Dainty Fairy Slipper Orchids
With all of the early displays of wildflowers, it looks as if it will be spectacular year for wildflowers. If you need help in identifying the abundant flowers from the foothills to the alpine zones, my Rocky Mountain Wildflowers Field Guide is the book for you. It includes over 225 wildflowers with clear photographs and descriptions with common, scientific, and family names. The softbound book is pocket-sized for convenience and all flowers are on color-coded pages to locate easily. This handy guide is available through our website www.highcountryartworks.com for $11.95 postpaid and through Amazon.
If you are an eBook reader, Rocky Mountain Wildflowers Field Guide by Linda Nagy is also available in all electronic formats. The eBook version is newly revised and has over 250 flowers included for only $9.95. For more information and to purchase, check on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, or through your ITunes store.
All photos copyright 2015, Bernie Nagy