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Author Topic: Spring Flowers in the Rocky Mountains, Alberta, Canada  (Read 5152 times)

Alan_b

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Spring Flowers in the Rocky Mountains, Alberta, Canada
« on: June 17, 2013, 09:02:08 PM »
These pictures were taken between 6th and 12th June in the area around Banff.  I'm using a book I bought there to identify the flowers.  You may gather I am very ignorant about alpines.

Firstly an orchid called a Calypso (Calypso bulbosa) also known as a 'Venus Slipper' or 'Fairy Slipper'.  This was actually very easily found growing in woodland in dappled shade so it must be quite a common plant.  Perhaps it would grow in similar conditions in Scotland? 

   
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Hoy

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Re: Spring Flowers in the Rocky Mountains, Alberta, Canada
« Reply #1 on: June 17, 2013, 09:13:00 PM »
A beautiful norne, Alan!

I know it is native in Scandinavia but I have never seen it in the wild. Would love to have it in my garden!
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Maggi Young

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Re: Spring Flowers in the Rocky Mountains, Alberta, Canada
« Reply #2 on: June 17, 2013, 09:18:09 PM »
 The enchanting little Calypso is one of my favourite flowers  8)
The late, great Kath Dryden used to grow it and that was my introduction to it in real life.
Chris in Poland seems to be doing well with it, but I worry too much about killing such a beauty to even try sourcing it!
Margaret Young in Aberdeen, North East Scotland Zone 7 -ish!

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Alan_b

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Re: Spring Flowers in the Rocky Mountains, Alberta, Canada
« Reply #3 on: June 17, 2013, 10:00:06 PM »
The Calypso is so beautiful a flower that one thinks it must be difficult to grow, but it grows in such abundance in the area I was visiting that I wonder if maybe it isn't.  Worth a try, Maggi? 
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Maggi Young

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Re: Spring Flowers in the Rocky Mountains, Alberta, Canada
« Reply #4 on: June 17, 2013, 10:14:09 PM »
No, Alan, this is one I won't try -   the world is full of places where gorgeous plants grow in profusion but which are intractable in cultivation- sometimes I'm game to try 'em, but this isn't one of those. 
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Alan_b

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Re: Spring Flowers in the Rocky Mountains, Alberta, Canada
« Reply #5 on: June 17, 2013, 10:41:37 PM »
I saw a variety of anemones of different heights and sizes and I think all these flower are such.  Typically they were growing in full sun, often near the edge of a lake.

Edit:  I now think the second photo here (labelled anemone1) may actually be a Pasque flower (or 'Prairie Crocus').  I only found these on a trip we made down the valley to lower altitudes and thus later in the season.  Most of them had gone over but I'm pretty sure that I managed to photograph one; in which case it is this one.  Lori S. confirms this identification as Pulsatilla patens  (also known as Eastern Pasqueflower).  The large flower in the first photo is identified as  Trollius albiflorus, common name White Globe Flower.
« Last Edit: June 19, 2013, 11:38:56 PM by Alan_b »
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Alan_b

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Re: Spring Flowers in the Rocky Mountains, Alberta, Canada
« Reply #6 on: June 17, 2013, 10:45:15 PM »
More anemones
« Last Edit: June 17, 2013, 10:49:05 PM by Alan_b »
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Alan_b

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Re: Spring Flowers in the Rocky Mountains, Alberta, Canada
« Reply #7 on: June 17, 2013, 10:55:43 PM »
Typically the anemones were distributed more sparsely than the previous picture conveys.

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Alan_b

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Re: Spring Flowers in the Rocky Mountains, Alberta, Canada
« Reply #8 on: June 17, 2013, 11:17:40 PM »
Another white-flowered plant that I thought was probably a type of strawberry, although the leaves are very narrow.  I saw many of this type but also other plants with broader leaves looking more like the illustration in my book and the UK wild strawberry.

Edit:  Lori S.identified this as Fragaria virginiana but it still seems to me to be a form with particularly long narrow leaves by comparison with other illustrations of the species that I can find.

« Last Edit: June 19, 2013, 11:28:50 PM by Alan_b »
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Tony Willis

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Re: Spring Flowers in the Rocky Mountains, Alberta, Canada
« Reply #9 on: June 17, 2013, 11:19:15 PM »
No, Alan, this is one I won't try -   the world is full of places where gorgeous plants grow in profusion but which are intractable in cultivation- sometimes I'm game to try 'em, but this isn't one of those.

lovely pictures Alan,of over to look at them ourselves in a week or so. Maggi clearly you need a Chorley climate where calypso thrives quite well.
Chorley, Lancashire zone 8b

Alan_b

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Re: Spring Flowers in the Rocky Mountains, Alberta, Canada
« Reply #10 on: June 18, 2013, 05:23:33 AM »
Here is a distribution map I found for Calypso bulbosa http://linnaeus.nrm.se/flora/mono/orchida/calyp/calybulv.jpg .  Maybe Chorley also merits a dot?  I would have thought that anything so attractive and named 'bulbosa' might be of interest to a person who likes to grow bulbs.     
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Alan_b

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Re: Spring Flowers in the Rocky Mountains, Alberta, Canada
« Reply #11 on: June 18, 2013, 09:04:42 AM »
Another plant we only saw down the valley was the 'Shooting Star' (Dodecatheon pulchellum). These were dotted around in a meadow area, as you can just about make out in the second photo.

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Maggi Young

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Re: Spring Flowers in the Rocky Mountains, Alberta, Canada
« Reply #12 on: June 18, 2013, 10:05:59 AM »
Maggi clearly you need a Chorley climate where calypso thrives quite well.
Yes Tony, I know there are those who grow the plant in the UK, but I am so entranced by these little flowers that the thought of maybe killing one , or even keeping one or two in  captivity when they can be so glorious in their little communities in the wild is just beyond me.   It's an odd thing, because I'm happy to  try other plants which may require pot culture - it's just a mental block I have over this Calypso - I just think it is one of the most gorgeous flowers ever!
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astragalus

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Re: Spring Flowers in the Rocky Mountains, Alberta, Canada
« Reply #13 on: June 18, 2013, 03:07:47 PM »
Maggi, I agree.  Calypso bulbosa is exquisite, a plant that makes you keep looking and looking.  I've seen it a number of times in the wild and each time the habitat was such an integral setting for the plant.  I can't imagine liking it in a pot after seeing it in nature.
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Alan_b

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Re: Spring Flowers in the Rocky Mountains, Alberta, Canada
« Reply #14 on: June 18, 2013, 06:04:32 PM »
Does it have to be pot-grown?  I saw this plant in the vicinity of Banff, climate http://www.world-guides.com/north-america/canada/alberta/banff/banff_weather.html .  Compare this to, say, Stirling then peak summer temperatures are similar but  Banff experiences a much longer colder winter.  So surely the only useful thing a pot can provide is good drainage and less winter wet than is normal hereabouts?  Those are conditions you might be able to achieve in the ground with a little care.  Or am I being nave?
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