Also, check out my natural history blog....
Saturday, January 28, 2012
Sunday, May 22, 2011
Pataha Bunchgrass Research Natural Area, located on Umatilla National Forest, was established in 1968 to protect an excellent example of lower montane grasslands. This grassland is dominated by Idaho fescue (Festuca idahoensis) and bluebunch wheatgrass (Pseudoroegeneria spicata).
I didn't stop to key this one out, so I'm not sure if this is a weird color variation of Thompson's Indian paintbrush (Castilleja thompsonii) or some other species.
UPDATE: Thanks to Mark Egger for pointing out that this species is actually Castilleja cusickii.
North slope of Kaholotus Ridgetop is dominated by Idahoe fescue (Festuca idahoensis). Kahlotus Ridgetop Natural Area Preserve is managed by the Washington Dept. of Natural Resources (Natural Areas Program) to protect the best remaining example of 'dry' Palouse prairie.
The canyon grasslands of the Snake River canyon and its immediate tributaries differ from the Palouse prairie by being drier and having less species diversity. Hairy vetch (Vicia villosa), although an aggressive nonnative species, graces this photo with some nice color.
Although most of western Washington is covered with thick, dense forests, non-forested vegetation is occassionaly encountered in places like wetlands, prairies and rock outcrops like these, which are locally called "balds".
This beautiful grass is one of the few remaining native species that has been able to withstand farming and grazing impacts which have eliminated most of the native species from the grasslands at American Camp (San Juan National Historical Park).