Tag Archives: mount rainier

Random Plant: Sweet after death

Sweet after death (Achlys triphylla, Berberidaceae) gets its common name from the fragrant aroma that is released by its dead and dried leaves. This scent has been compared to vanilla, and as a result it’s also known as vanilla leaf. In spite … Continue reading

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Random Plant: Pink mountain heather

Unique to mountain meadows of western North America, pink mountain heather (Phyllodoce empetriformis, Ericaceae) can be found at elevations above 5000 feet (1524 m) from Alaska to Colorado. Forming low, dense mats of growth up to 16 inches (41 cm) in … Continue reading

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Mount Rainier National Park

Situated at the center of Mount Rainier National Park is the namesake peak that represents a number of superlatives. At 14,410 feet (nearly 4,400 m) Mount Rainier is the tallest mountain in Washington and the tallest mountain in the entire Cascade Range. … Continue reading

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Random Plant: Pearly everlasting

Of about 100 species of everlastings that are found throughout the world, only one is native to North America.  Pearly everlasting (Anaphalis margaritacea, Asteraceae) inhabits much of the continent and can typically be found in prairies, meadows, and in waste spaces … Continue reading

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Sooty Grouse hen with chicks

While hiking at Mount Rainier National Park in Washington earlier this month I came across a Sooty Grouse hen (Galliformes: Phasianidae: Dendragapus fuliginosus) with at least three chicks. These birds were foraging among the meadow wildflowers near Paradise Park, seeking out … Continue reading

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Random Plant: Western pasqueflower

Looking like something out of a Dr. Seuss book, the seed heads of western pasqueflower (Pulsatilla occidentalis, Ranunculaceae) are a definite curiosity. In the spring and early summer this plant produces large, creamy white flowers that attract insects. By late summer … Continue reading

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