Roots of Gold

One of the easily missed flowers in the sub-alpine is the Three-leaved Goldthread (Coptis trifolia). I found several in bloom on a walk around Paradise Meadows earlier this month. Like the name suggests, it has three evergreen basal leaves. The small white flower and three basal leaves of Three-leaved Goldthread (Coptis trifolia) make it easy to identify. Compare the simple …

More Flowers in Paradise Meadows

While the Jeffrey’s Shootingstar display in Paradise Meadows, Strathcona Provincial Park, British Columbia is exceptional right now, so are many other flowers in the meadows. The late snow melt has compressed the wildflower bloom into a shorter time frame and as a result many early spring flowers are blooming at the same time as late summer flowers. Further into the …

Delightful Dodecatheons

Jeffrey’s Shootingstar (Dodecatheon jeffreyi) is out in full force in Paradise Meadows, Strathcona Provincial Park. The timing of this bloom couldn’t be more perfect, coinciding with the Perseids meteor shower. In the meadows, the downward pointing flowers might just be more spectacular than the display in the night sky in mid-August. Take a walk around the wheelchair accessible boardwalk and …

Early Sub-alpine Flowers

In an effort to find some allergy relief we headed up to Paradise Meadows in Strathcona Provincial Park to survey the trail conditions. We knew that with the record snowfall this winter most of the meadow trails would be still be under snow and from the looks of things it might be late July before the trails are accessible for …

Salal, a Visual Symphony

Guest post by Chris Carter If I had been asked for a list of photogenic wild flowers a few weeks ago, Salal (Gaultheria shallon) would not have been near the top. Salal is best known for its bright evergreen leaves, always in demand by the florist trade. Walking back from the beach last week, I noticed a splendid Salal bush …

Gorgeous Gummy Gooseberry!

A number of years ago when I worked at Strathcona Provincial Park as a naturalist I was leading a guided walk around the Karst Creek Trail when a member of the group made a very interesting discovery. We had been poking along doing some bird watching and looking at all sorts of plants along the edge of the trail. At …

Buttle Lake Bluffs

It’s a spot where few people stop on their way to Ralph River Campground in Strathcona Provincial Park. There doesn’t look like there’s much to see and the road is so narrow, twisty and windy in this section that there aren’t many places to pull over safely as well, especially if you’ve got a Boliden-Westmin Mines ore truck on your …

Tiptoeing Past Fairyslippers

Looking down at a pair of Fairyslippers (Calypso bulbosa). The challenge was to get a composition with the flower and the leaf below. This is definitely the time of year to look for Fairyslippers (Calypso bulbosa) in the dark, damp forests of Vancouver Island, British Columbia. These beautiful orchids are often missed, so slow down and keep your eyes open …

Wonderful Western Trillium

It’s definitely that time of the year – spring flowers are appearing everywhere. If you’re on Vancouver Island make your way to any riverside trail and search for the wonderful Western Trillium (Trillium ovatum). I found several while walking along Black Creek in Miracle Beach Provincial Park 30 minutes north of Courtenay, British Columbia. Western Trillium (Trillium ovatum) – a …

Canyon View Trail in Campbell River

The beautiful White Fawn Lily (Erythronium oregonum) is one of many wildflowers in bloom along the Canyon View Trail in Elk Falls Provincial Park. The Canyon View Trail in Elk Falls Provincial Park is a six kilometer loop that follows the banks of the Campbell River is spectacular right now and getting better every day. Allow yourself about 1.5 hours …