"Grand Teton, Moose Entrance" by U.S. National Park Service , public domain


Common Plants

brochure Nature - Common Plants

Common Plants brochure for Grand Teton National Park (NP) in Wyoming. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).

Grand Teton National Park Service U.S. Department of the Interior Grand Teton National Park John D. Rockefeller, Jr. Memorial Parkway Common Plants Alpine forget-me-not Ofcial park fower Wildfowers color the Tetons as the snow melts. As the snow level gradually retreats up the mountain canyons, wildfowers of every color blossom, brightening valley then canyon. The diverse communities of the park give rise to diferent wildfowers at diferent times at diferent elvations throughout the summer. While valley fowers may have faded by July, blooms are just opening at the higher elevations. Learn more about the fowers and communities found here in Grand Teton National Park. Growing Zones Valley (6,400 - 7,000 feet) Porous, rocky valley soils support plants able to tolerate warm, dry conditions. In addition to abundant sagebrush, numerous wildfowers and grasses grow. During June and July, a profusion of color enlivens the valley: yellow balsamroot, blue lupine, and red gilia. During August, sunfowers replace balsamroot. Canyons (7,000 - 10,000 feet) Between the crags of the Tetons, ice age glaciers carved deep canyons. Today, the canyons contain dense conifer forests and open meadows of Trees Most of the trees in the park are conifers because of the short growing season. Conifers retain their leaves (needles) throughout the year and can produce food (photosynthesize) on warm spring days. Deciduous trees shed their leaves in the fall and grow new ones each spring before they can photosynthesize. Aspens and cottonwoods have chlorophyll in the bark and so they can photosynthesize before producing leaves. Lodgepole pine, the most abundant conifer, grows on the lower mountain slopes and in welldrained glacial soils throughout the valley. Needles are 2-3 inches long, clustered in bundles of 2; cones are 1-2 inches long. Douglas-fr, not a true fr, inhabits dry south- to east-facing slopes. Large diameter trees have coarse, furrowed bark. Needles are fat and 1 inch long; cones have a 3-pointed bract Subalpine fr grows on wetter north-facing valley sites and at higher elevations. Smooth bark and spire-like growth identify subalpine fr. Needles are fat and 1 inch long. Cones are purple grow upright on branches. Shrubs Big sagebrush thrives in dry habitats and carpets most of the valley foor. Plants are one to fve feet tall; leaves are grayish green. Tiny yellow fowers bloom in August. Antelope bitterbrush occurs with sagebrush in the southern half of Jackson Hole. Bitterbrush grows to three feet fall. Cream-colored fowers bloom in June. Huckleberry grows two to four feet tall in lodgepole pine forests in the valley and mountain canyons. Purple berries are produced in August. Serviceberry grows to ten feet tall. Showy white fowers bloom in spring, producing purple berries by late summer. Chokecherry is a grows to twenty feet tall. Cylindrical clusters of showy white fowers bloom wildfowers. As elevation increases, wildfowers abound while trees become stunted and eventually shrub-like. “Krummholz” (German for “crooked wood”) plants are dwarfed forms that are treelike at lower elevations. Alpine (above 10,000 feet) Above treeline, plants adapt to wind, snow, and lack of soil by growing close to the ground. Alpine plants take advantage of a brief growing season by fowering soon after the snow melts. Some species grow only in the alpine area; others grow taller at lower elevations, but are dwarfed in the alpine. Engelmann spruce occurs with subalpine fr. Rough bark and abundant cones hanging down from upper branches identify Engelmann spruce. Needles are sharp, four-sided and occur singly and cones are 1.5 inches long with papery scales. Blue spruce lines rivers and creeks in the valley. Cones have papery scales and are twice as large as those found on Engelmann spruce. Spruce needles are sharp, four-sided, and occur singly. Limber pines grow individually on open, dry valley sites. Needles grow in bundles of 5. Cones are 4-8 inches long. Whitebark pine grows above 8,000 feet. Needles are in bundles of 5. Cones are purple and smaller than those of limber pine. Aspen grows in stands on level, moist sites and on dry slopes. Aspen bark is smooth and greenish, cream-colored. Reproduction is primarily from shoots sprouting from horizontal roots. Cottonwoods, close relatives of aspens, grow along rivers and creeks in the valley. Bark on mature trees is heavily furrowed. The species here hybridize freely so identifcation of individual species may be difcult. in spring, and turn to dark red berries by August. Utah honeysuckle grows in open lodgepole pine forests. Leaves are opposite. Paired cream-colored fowers bloom in early June, producing red unpalatable berries. Mountain ash grows as a tall shrub on lower mountain slopes. Flat-topped clusters of white fowers bloom in June. In fall, bright orange fruits complement vivid red compound leaves. Willows occur in moist areas, especially along stream banks. Twenty species are found in the park and parkway. Snowbrush ceanothus thrives in burned areas. Shiny, leathery leaves are retained through winter. Clusters of aromatic white fowers bloom in June. White Flowers Valley Canyons Huckleberry __________________ Mountain ash ________________ Birchleaf spirea _______________ Chokecherry _________________ Woodland star ________________ Richardson geranium __________ Thimbleberry ________________ Green gentian ________________ Snowbrush ceanothus _________ Cow parsnip _________________ Serviceberry __________________ American bistort ______________ Ladies-tresses ________________ White bog-orchid _____________ Manyfowered phlox __________ Colorado columbine __________ Marsh marigold _______________ Yampah ______________________ Engelmann aster ______________ Yarrow ______________________ June __________________________ ______________________________ July___________________________ June June June–August __________________ ______________________________ June–July_____________________ June–July late June–mid August ___________ June June __________________________ August–September _____________ late June–mid August ___________ June–mid July_________________ ______________________________ ______________________________ July–mid August _______________ ______________________________ July–early August ______________ July July July Alpine June–August June–July July–mid August July–August July___________________________ August August–September July–August mid June–July late June–August June–mid July__________________ June–July mid July–August July–August mid July–late August ____________ August Yellow Flowers Mules-ear wyethia ____________ Hymenoxys __________________ Sunfower ____________________ Arrowleaf balsamroot _________ Rabbitbrush __________________ Heartleaf arnica ______________ Shrubby cinquefoil ____________ Yellow monkeyfower _________ Lanceleaf stonecrop ___________ Glacier lily ___________________ Western wallfower ____________ Subalpine buttercup ___________ Death camas _________________ Oregon grape _________________ Sulfur buckwheat _____________ Yellow columbine _____________ Yellow fritillary _______________ Butterweed groundsel _________ mid June–July ______________________________ mid July–August June–mid July June–mid July mid June–mid July _____________ June–September June–mid July_________________ June–August _____________________________ _____________________________ _____________________________ June _________________________ May–June mid June–mid August late June–July __________________ mid May–mid June late July–September ______________________________ July–August late June–late July late June–late July June–July______________________ July June–July July–August mid June–early August __________ mid July–August July–late August Pink – Red Flowers Spring beauty _________________ Sticky geranium _______________ Parry’s primrose ______________ Prairiesmoke _________________ Globemallow _________________ Steer’s head __________________ Subalpine spirea ______________ Shooting star _________________ Lewis monkeyfower __________ Mountain snowberry __________ Spreading dogbane ____________ Mountain heather _____________ Fireweed _____________________ Moss campion ________________ Calypso orchid _______________ Elephant head ________________ Indian paintbrush _____________ Striped coralroot ______________ Skyrocket gilia ________________ May__________________________ June–August _____________________________ June–early July July–mid August _______________ late May–mid June ____________ _____________________________ June _____________________________ June–July_____________________ July–August _____________________________ mid July–August _____________________________ June late June–July_________________ June–July_____________________ June–July mid June–July June–mid July July–August ___________________ August mid July–August late June–mid July mid July–late August late June–late August late June–August July July–August ___________________ August–September July–mid August mid July–August July–August ___________________ mid July–early September Blue – Purple Flowers Blue fax _____________________ Rock clematis ________________ Sky pilot _____________________ Monkshood __________________ Low larkspur _________________ Mountain bluebell ____________ Fringed gentian _______________ Harebell _____________________ Lupine _______________________ Mountain bog gentian _________ Silky phacelia _________________ Blue camas ___________________ Alpine forget-me-not __________ July–August June _________________________ _____________________________ late June–mid July_____________ mid May–June _____________________________ late July–mid August ___________ mid June–early September June–July _____________________________ late June–July_________________ June _____________________________ July ______________________________ mid July–mid August July–August mid July–early September August–early September late July–early September mid July–late August ____________ late July–early September ______________________________ July–early August

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