Updated: Sep 21, 2018
Earth Laughs In Flowers
- Ralph Waldo Emerson
We are all dressed up in colour at Glenbow Ranch Provincial Park, showing off a kaleidoscope of reds, yellows and blues for the summer floral show. Long gone are the Prairie Crocus (Pullasatilla) that bless the ridges overlooking the rail line in early spring. The brilliant Yellow Lady Slipper (Cypripedium parviflorum), a late spring favourite. Hanging out in a variety of habitats has allowed the late bloomers to make an appearance.
First down the walkway is a Shooting Star (Dodecatheon), fresh out of a woodland habitat. You will not find this lady showing off her finery in the prairie meadows. She is shy and sticks to the cover of trees.
Prancing out next are Harebells and Wild Asters freshened up after a summer shower.
Golden Alexanders (Z. aurea) follow, another sunny specimen, bridging the woodlands with the prairies, these yellow heads prefer wet habitats but can survive dry summers.
The dainty Grandfather’s Beard (Geum triflorum) have made a surprise appearance. Hurrah! We thought they would still be in their early stages but it looks like this one has burst for our show.
Finally we have Wild Delphiniums or Larkspur (Delphinium exaltum). Yes, although rare, botany come in blues too. Unlike its domestic cousin these stately bloomers can withstand the heat of a prairie summer. Bring on the florals at the Ranch!
And the weedy group always makes a big splash with Oysterplant, Canadian and Scottish Thistles. Joyfully, we have an early fall showing from the Blanket Flower (Gallardia aristata). It blends in well with the autumn leaves of the Canadian prairies.
For more on Glenbow Ranch Provincial Park, see also: