Flowering Plants in Colorado

The official State Flower of Colorado is the Rocky Mountain Columbine.

Family Aceraceae Maple trees
Family Adoxaceae Snowball bush and others
Family Agavaceae Yucca
Family Amaryllidaceae Amaryllis
Family Anacardiaceae Poison Ivey
Family Asteraceae Aster, daisy, or sunflower family.
Family Cactaceae Cactus family
Family Campanulaceae Bellflower family
Family Cannabaceae Hemp, Hops and Hackberries
Family Commelinaceae Spiderwart family
Family Convolvulaceae Bindweed family
Family Cupressaceae Cypress family
Family Dipsacaceae Teasel
Family Ericaceae Heath or Heather family
Family Euphorbiaceae Spurge family
Family Fagaceae Beech Family of trees and shrubs.
Family Fumariaceae fumitory, fumewort, or bleeding-heart
Family Lamiaceae Mint family
Family Loasaceae Loasa
Family Oleaceae Olive family
Family Onagraceae Primrose family
Family Papaveraceae Poppy family.
Family Plantaginaceae Plantain family
Family Poaceae Foxtails and others.
Family Polygonaceae Buckwheat family.
Family Ranunculaceae Colombine and others.
Family Rosaceae Rose family, large.
Family Salicaceae a family of flowering plants.
Family Typhaceae Cattails.
Family Ulmaceae Elm trees
Family Vitaceae Grapes and Virginia Creeper

Family Oleaceae, the Olive family, with about 600 species

An Ash tree, this one the Green Ash. According to Wikipedia, it is native to eastern and central North America, from Nova Scotia west to southeastern Alberta and eastern Colorado, south to northern Florida, and southwest to eastern Texas.

Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Lamiales
Family: Oleaceae
Genus: Fraxinus
Species: F. pennsylvanica

Lilac

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Lamiales
Family: Oleaceae
Genus: Syringa

There are about 20 species within this Genus. This picture was taken on 22 May 2008, as the blooming just started in Colorado Springs, CO


Family Ulmaceae, Elm trees

Elm tree. In Colorado Springs, these things propogate and grow like weeds.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Rosales
Family: Ulmaceae
Genus: Ulmus


Family Fagaceae -- Beech family, comprises about 900 species of both evergreen and deciduous trees and shrubs.

Gambel Oak tree. Also called scrub oak. This one was found on 6 July 2008 alongside Fountain Creek, just West of Manitou Springs, CO.

The second picture was taken on 25 August 2010, and shows the seed pod produced by this Scrub oak. It was at the Bear Creek Nature Center.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Fagales
Family: Fagaceae
Genus: Quercus
Section: Quercus
Species: Q. gambelii



Family Salicaceae, a collection of flowering plants inclucing 57 genera.

Aspen trees, near Elevenmile Lake, on 29 September 2006. These trees turn their leaves a bright yellow in late September or early October. If there has been a drought, they will turn a dull yellow.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Malpighiales
Family: Salicaceae
Genus: Populus
Section: Populus
Species: tremuloides

The species we have in Colorado is the Quaking (or Trembling) Aspen, Populus tremuloides. They are called that because the leaves move in even the slightest breeze.


Cottonwood tree. These trees can grow quite large. Typically, they do best if near a source of water. This one is just West of Manitou Springs, CO near Fountain Creek. Picture taken 6 July 2008.

The Cottonwood tree found in Colorado would be the Eastern Cottonwood, Populus deltoides, and sub-species Rio Grande Cottonwood (populus wislizeni).

Cottonwood trees, like almost all living things, come in two genders: male and female. The second picture shows the flowers that bloom on the male cottonwood. This picture was taken on 5 May 2009, El Paso county, CO. The third picture shows the seed pods on the female cottonwood. These pods release the millions of white fluffy seeds that float all over your neighborhood.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Malpighiales
Family: Salicaceae
Genus: Populus
Species: deltoides (Eastern Cottonwood)
Sub-species: wislizeni (Rio Grande Cottonwood)


Willow tree. This one was growing alongside Fountain Creek just West of Manitou Springs, Colorado on 6 July 2008.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Malpighiales
Family: Salicaceae
Genus: Salix
and there are about 350 species within this Genus.


Family Aceraceae -- Maple family, about 120 species of trees and shrubs.

Maple Tree. This picture was taken in November 2008. Most of the leaves had already fallen, but these were on some small shoots growing from the base of the tree.

Kingdom Plantae Plants
Subkingdom Tracheobionta Vascular plants
Superdivision Spermatophyta Seed plants
Division Magnoliophyta Flowering plants
Class Magnoliopsida Dicotyledons
Subclass Rosidae
Order Sapindales
Family Aceraceae Maple family
Genus Acer L. maple


Family Anacardiaceae, Poison Ivy

Poison Ivy. Found on 1 June 2010 at the Fountain Creek Nature Center.

Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Rosids
Order: Sapindales
Family: Anacardiaceae
Genus: Toxicodendron
Species: T. radicans

Poison Ivy, same place as above, maybe even the same plant, on 4 August 2011.


Family Vitaceae, Grapes and Virginia Creeper

This is the Virginia Creeper. Grows along anything that will let it climb. Grows small bunches of small berries. Also known as the American Ivy. It looks similar to the Poison Ivy, but Poison Ivy typically has 3 leaves in a cluster; this has 5 leaves. Also known as Woodbine. Some people make tea from the leaves.

By mid September, the small berries are blue.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Vitales
Family: Vitaceae
Genus: Parthenocissus
Species: P. quinquefolia



Family Asteraceae. Aster, daisy, or sunflower family. It is the second largest family of flowering plants, in terms of number of species

Arnica mollis (probably). Picture taken July 6, 2008 in Teller Co., Colorado.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Asterales
Family: Asteraceae
Subfamily: Asteroideae
Tribe: Heliantheae
Subtribe: Madiinae
Genus: Arnica
Species: Mollis (probably).

Dandelion. This is 19 April 2008, and we are still getting freezing temperatures at night in Colorado Springs, but the Dandelion wastes no time in getting started.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Asterales
Family: Asteraceae
Tribe: Cichorieae
Genus: Taraxacum

There are many species of Dandelion.

This is the Colorado Thistle or Elk Thistle, or more properly known as the Meadow Thistle. This plant is native to Colorado. The first picture was taken near Elevenmile Lake, Park County. It was at least 1 foot across, pushing back the surrounding grass.

The second picture was taken on 31 August 2010, also near Elevenmile Lake.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Asterales
Family: Asteraceae
Subfamily: Carduoideae
Tribe: Cynareae
Genus: Cirsium
Species: Cirsium foliosum


Cocklebur. Also known as a Cockle-burr. Picture taken 16 July 2009 in Colorado Springs.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Asterales
Family: Asteraceae
Genus: Xanthium

Sunflowers, 4 August 2008. Species unknown. The second picture was taken on 16 July 2009 of the flower bed in my back yard, which was supposed to have a variety of flowers. I don't know where the sunflowers came from, but they overpower everything else. The flower part is 6" in diameter, and 2.5" for just the seed part.

Kingdom: Plantae
Phylum: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Asterales
Family: Asteraceae
Genus: Helianthus


Coneflower. Found on 10 July 2009 at the Fountain Creek Nature Center. This is also known as a Mexican hat.

Kingdom Plantae Plants
Subkingdom Tracheobionta Vascular plants
Superdivision Spermatophyta Seed plants
Division Magnoliophyta Flowering plants
Class Magnoliopsida Dicotyledons
Subclass Asteridae
Order Asterales
Family Asteraceae Aster family
Genus Ratibida Raf. prairie coneflower
Species: columnifera

This is probably a Rudbeckia, Rudbeckia laciniata. Common names are Cutleaf, Cutleaf Coneflower, Goldenglow, Green-headed Coneflower, Tall Coneflower or, Thimbleweed. Found by Alyssa Erickson along a hiking trail on 8 August 2009.

Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Asterales
Family: Asteraceae
Subfamily: Asteroideae
Tribe: Heliantheae
Genus: Rudbeckia
Species: laciniata (maybe)

Canada Thistle. These pictures were taken at the Fountain, Colorado Nature Center on 16 July 2008.

Kingdom Plantae Plants
Subkingdom Tracheobionta Vascular plants
Superdivision Spermatophyta Seed plants
Division Magnoliophyta Flowering plants
Class Magnoliopsida Dicotyledons
Subclass Asteridae
Order Asterales
Family Asteraceae Aster family
Genus Cirsium thistle
Species Cirsium arvense Canada thistle

This was found on 18 August 2013, near the Glen Cove resort at the 11,400 foot level of Pikes Peak. The Ranger that checks your brake temperature on your way down said that it was a "Hanging Head Thistle". I have not been able to find it by that name, but it does seem to match the picture of a Musk Thistle, which is an invasive species. It is also known as a Nodding Thistle, and Nodding plumeless thistle.

Wickipedia says that this plant grows to an elevation of 8,200 feet, so this one was way higher than that.

Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Asterales
Family: Asteraceae
Tribe: Cynareae
Genus: Carduus
Species: C. nutans

This is either the Erigeron annuus, Eastern Daisy Fleabane, or the Cutleaf Daisy, Erigeron compositus. Found in El Paso County, Colorado on 19 July 2009. It is also known as a Fleabane. It is a small flower, with the flower part not more than 1" in diameter.

Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Asterales
Family: Asteraceae
Tribe: Astereae
Genus: Erigeron. About 390 species, 173 in North Americal

Found at the Fountain Creek Nature Center on 7 Sep 2008.

Becky Riggle of Thornton, CO says this is a type of wild Aster.

Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Asterales
Family: Asteraceae
Tribe: Astereae
Genus: Aster

Found at Spinney Lake, Park Co., Colorado on 9 Sep 2008.

Becky Riggle of Thornton, CO says this is a type of wild Aster.

Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Asterales
Family: Asteraceae
Tribe: Astereae
Genus: Aster

Found in El Paso County, Colorado on 10 Sep 2008.

Becky Riggle of Thornton, CO says this is a type of wild Aster.

Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Asterales
Family: Asteraceae
Tribe: Astereae
Genus: Aster

These were found in Northeast El Paso county, Colorado on 22 September 2011. They are perenial shrubs known as Rabbit Brush. There are two sub-species, the Rubber Rabbit Brush and the Gray Rabbit Brush. Identification was made by Marla Seth.

Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Asterales
Family: Asteraceae
Tribe: Astereae
Genus: Ericameria (formerly Chrysothamnus)
Species: E. nauseosa (maybe)



Family Cupressaceae or cypress family

This is a Juniper, and probably the Utah Junipter, Juniperus osteosperma. It is native to western Colorado, and other western states. We bought this one at a nursery in Colorado Springs.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Pinophyta
Class: Pinopsida
Order: Pinales
Family: Cupressaceae
Genus: Juniperus
Species: J. osteosperma


Family Ericaceae, the Heath or Heather.

Wild Blueberries, at the Bear Creek Nature Center, Colorado Springs on 25 August 2010. Thry are ripe now, so the Black Bears will soon be feeding on them. The Nature Center employees have already stopped putting up the bird feeders to avoid attracting bears to the buildings.

Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Ericales
Family: Ericaceae
Genus: Vaccinium
Section: Cyanococcus


Family Convolvulaceae, Bindweed family.

This is a vine in the Bindweed family, Convolvulaceae. It is the Convolvulus arvensis. It is also known as a Morning glory. The leaves are shaped like arrow heads. This picture was taken on 17 June 2010 at the Fountain Creek Nature center, Fountain, Colorado.

Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Solanales
Family: Convolvulaceae
Genus: Convolvulus
Species: arvensis


Family Campanulaceae, Bellflower family, about 2000 species.

Probably a Bluebell Bellflower. These were growing along the road between Cripple Creek and Divide, Colorado on 6 July 2008.

Kingdom Plantae Plants
Subkingdom Tracheobionta Vascular plants
Superdivision Spermatophyta Seed plants
Division Magnoliophyta Flowering plants
Class Magnoliopsida Dicotyledons
Subclass Asteridae
Order Campanulales
Family Campanulaceae Bellflower family
Genus Campanula L. bellflower P
Species Campanula rotundifolia L. bluebell bellflower



Family Apocynaceae, dogbane family, includes trees, shrubs, herbs.

This the Common Milkweed, AKA Butterfly flower, Silkweed, Silky Swallow-wort, Virginia Silkweed. The milky latex in this plant is toxic to many other wildlife species, but not the larvae and adult Monarch Butterfly, which uses this plant as a primary food source. Two other insects that feed on this plant without harm are the Red Milkweed beetle, and the Milkweed bug. This picture was taken at the Fountain, CO Nature Center on 12 June 2008.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Gentianales
Family: Apocynaceae
Subfamily: Asclepiadoideae
Genus: Asclepias
Species: A. syriaca


20 June 2008, Milkweed plant flowering. 9 August 2008, Milkweed plant w/ seed pods.

Family Scrophulariaceae, figwort family. Many species.

Common Mullein. In Europe, it is called the Great Mullein. In the past, it has had about 40 other common names. Picture taken at the Fountain Creek Nature Center, 30 July 2008. The plant is about six feet tall.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Lamiales
Family: Scrophulariaceae
Genus: Verbascum
Species: V. thapsus



Family Papaveraceae, poppy family. Many species.

This is a Prickly Poppy, probably Argemone pleicantha or Argemone polyanthemos? These pictures were taken July 3, 2008 in Colorado Springs, CO.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Ranunculales
Family: Papaveraceae
Genus: Argemone



Family Cactaceae, Cactus

Cactus, in the EagleCrest sub-division north-west of Cripple Creek, Teller county, Colorado. This is about 3 inches across. There are many species of cactus that look like this, so it remains to be seen just what this one is.
More pictures of the same species of cactus, in the EagleCrest sub-division. These cactii were about 2" in diameter. I would estimate that there are more than 100 of them just in my 2 acres of land.

The web site at rockymountainwild.org/species/plants/colorado-hookless-cactus describes a "Colorado Hookless Cactus" that appears to be identical to the ones I found. But that one is becoming famous since some environmentalists have stopped oil and gas exploration near Grand Junction, Colorado, because some of these cactus have been found there. They have arranged to have them declared an endangered species.

But it seems to me that this cactus is widespread; it should not be called endangered. I can not see the difference between their picture and mine. These pictures were taken on May 29, 2012. If I am mistaken, someone will let me know.

Kingdom: Plantae
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Caryophyllales
Family: Cactaceae
Genus: Sclerocactus
Species: glaucus



Prickly Pear cactus.

Kingdom Plantae Plants
Subkingdom Tracheobionta Vascular plants
Superdivision Spermatophyta Seed plants
Division Magnoliophyta Flowering plants
Class Magnoliopsida Dicotyledons
Subclass Caryophyllidae
Order Caryophyllales
Family Cactaceae Cactus family
Genus Opuntia pricklypear
Species Opuntia polyacantha plains pricklypear

The first picture was taken on 8 May 2008, at the Fountain, Colorado Nature center.


20 September 2008.
This cactus was found at the Royal Gorge, Fremont county Colorado near Canon City on 6 July 2010. Alyssa took the detailed photo of the flower. It is a cane cholla (or walking stick cholla, tree cholla, chainlink cactus, etc.)

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Caryophyllales
Family: Cactaceae
Genus: Cylindropuntia
Species: C. imbricata





Family Loasaceae -- Loasa

Bractless Blazingstar, found at the Fountain Creek Nature Center on 7 Sep 2008.

Kingdom Plantae Plants
Subkingdom Tracheobionta Vascular plants
Superdivision Spermatophyta Seed plants
Division Magnoliophyta Flowering plants
Class Magnoliopsida Dicotyledons
Subclass Dilleniidae
Order Violales
Family Loasaceae Loasa family
Genus Mentzelia L. blazingstar
Species Mentzelia nuda Bractless Blazingstar


Family Ranunculaceae -- Buttercup or Crowfoot.

Alyssa Erickson took this picture in June 2009 on a hiking trail near Colorado Springs. This is either the Colorado state flower (Aquilegia caerules) or a closely related species. Most pictures of the Columbine show more purple than I see in this one, but it may be normal variation. There are about 60 - 70 species within the Columbine Genus.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
(unranked): Eudicots
Order: Ranunculales
Family: Ranunculaceae
Subfamily: Thalictroideae
Genus: Aquilegia (colombine)


Family Euphorbiaceae -- Spurge

According to Wikipedia, this is a large family of flowering plants with 300 genera and around 7,500 species.
Myrtle Spurge (Euphorbia myrsinites). These pictures taken in El Paso County, Colorado. Blooms early, this picture taken on 16 March 2009, and it had started blooming a week earlier. The boards on the fence are 6" wide, so you can see how big the blooms are.

According to Wikipedia, although it is sometimes grown as a decorative plant in gardens, particularly valued in xeriscaping in dry areas, myrtle spurge is often considered noxious, and is invasive in some regions. Its cultivation is illegal in the state of Colorado. The milky sap can cause significant skin and eye irritations.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Subclass: Rosidae
(unranked): Eurosids I
Order: Malpighiales
Family: Euphorbiaceae
Subfamily: Euphorbioideae
Tribe: Euphorbieae
Subtribe: Euphorbiinae
Genus: Euphorbia
Species: E. myrsinites


A closely related plant is the Leafy Spurge (Euphorbia esula). It is also known as the Green Spurge. It is in the same genus as the Myrtle Spurge, above. This picture was taken in Elbert Co., Colorado on 20 May 2009.

This plant is native to Europe, but has been introduced in North America. It is very invasive, and very hard to get rid of once it starts. Cattle will not graze on it.

Genus: Euphorbia
Species: E. esula


Family Agavaceae -- Yucca

Yucca. The ends of the leaves have very sharp barbs. If your finger gets stuck, it will hurt, but what is different about the Yucca plant is that it will keep on hurting for several months.

There are many species, but judging by the looks of the seed pods in the second photo, this must be the Baccata species. These pictures taken 19 April 2008 in Elbert Co., CO.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Liliopsida
Order: Asparagales
Family: Agavaceae
Genus: Yucca


Yucca with last year's seed pods.
Wisteria. Takes several years before it blooms.
French Hollyhock, Malva Sylvestris. This blooms in late summer. It is a biennial, so we have to plant the seeds one year to get flowers the next year. Sometimes sold as "althaea", supposedly a perennial.
This picture of an Iris took 2nd place in the El Paso County, CO fair, amateur photography competition, in July 2007.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Liliopsida
Order: Asparagales
Family: Iridaceae
Genus: Iris

There are between 200 and 300 species of Iris.


early May 2008

Family Adoxaceae -- Snowball bush and others

Snowball bush. More properly known as European Cranberry Viburnum, European Snowball Bush, Guelder Rose 'Roseum', and Viburnum opulus.

Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Dipsacales
Family: Adoxaceae
Genus: Viburnum
Species: opulus



Family Polygonaceae -- Family of plants known as "knotweed family" or "smartweed family" "buckwheat family" in the United States

Rhubarb. This plant was growing in our back yard when we bought our house in 1976. It has been moved twice. This picture was taken in 2003, which was a good year for it's growth. It is still here in 2008.
My mother used to make pie, with 1/2 Rhubarb, chopped into small pieces, and 1/2 strawberries. When the stem part of the leaf turns red in the fall, it is ripe, and can be eaten raw. The taste is a little strong, however.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Caryophyllales
Family: Polygonaceae
Genus: Rheum
and there are about 60 species.


Family Typhaceae -- Family of plants known as Cattails

Cattail or Bulrush. These pictures were taken at the Fountain Creek Nature Center, Fountain Colorado.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Liliopsida
Order: Poales
Family: Typhaceae
Genus: Typha
There are 8 species, but the one we have in Colorado is the most common, Typha latifolia - Common Cattail

Last year's growth, taken March 2008. This year's growth, taken August 2008.

Family Commelinaceae Spiderwort

A Bird-bill Dayflower, Commelina dianthifolia. The picture was taken at the Fountain Creek Nature Center, next to Fountain creek, on 4 June 2009. The second picture is from 19 June 2009, same place.

Kingdom Plantae Plants
Subkingdom Tracheobionta Vascular plants
Superdivision Spermatophyta Seed plants
Division Magnoliophyta Flowering plants
Class Liliopsida Monocotyledons
Subclass Commelinidae
Order Commelinales
Family Commelinaceae Spiderwort family
Genus Commelina L. dayflower
Species Commelina dianthifolia Delile birdbill dayflower



Family Poaceae Foxtail

A foxtail, a weed that grows everywhere. It is in the Alopecurus genus, and there are 25 to 35 species in that genus. Picture was taken on 16 July 2009 in Colorado Springs.

Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Monocots
(unranked): Commelinids
Order: Poales
Family: Poaceae
Genus: Alopecurus


Family Rosaceae -- Rose family, about 3,000 species.

A flower in the Potentilla genus, Found at the Fountain Creek Nature Center on 14 June 2009.

Erika Kaszczyszyn from www.longnamedgirl.com says this is known as a shrubby cinquefoil. That would be the same family, but different genus than what I had. More research needed.

Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Rosids
(unranked): Eurosids I
Order: Rosales
Family: Rosaceae
Subfamily: Rosoideae
Genus: Potentilla

Apache Plume (Fallugia paradoxa) Found at the Fountain Creek Nature Center on 14 June 2009. It had already bloomed, and these are the seed plumes.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Rosales
Family: Rosaceae
Genus: Fallugia
Species: F. paradoxa (the only species in this genus)


Wild Plums, picture taken on 29 August 2009 at the Fountain Creek Nature Center. This is also called a Goose Plum or an American Plum.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Rosales
Family: Rosaceae
Genus: Prunus
Species: americana


This is a Chokecherry. Just North of Manitou Springs, CO along highway 24. The first picture was on July 6, 2008, and the second was taken on 19 August 2008.

The third picture was taken on 27 May 2010. Note the very small white flowers just coming out. At first, I thought this was a Wild Grape, but the people at the University of British Columbia made the correct identification for me.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Rosales
Family: Rosaceae
Genus: Prunus
Subgenus: Padus[1]
Species: P. virginiana



This is a Mountain Spray plant. Found just west of Manitou Springs on 1 July 2011, along highway 24.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Rosales
Family: Rosaceae
Genus: Holodiscus
Species: dumosus

Spirea. Blooms once a year, very small white blossoms. This is what is sold in nurseries, and is probably not even close to the original version of the plant.

Becky Riggle of Thornton, CO identified it for me.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Rosales
Family: Rosaceae
Genus: Spriaea


These were found by the highway between Cripple Creek and Divide, Teller county Colorado on 25 June 2013. The best match I can find in my Field Guide to Rocky Mountain Wildflowers, by Craighead/Craighead/Davis, is the Thimbleberry.

It is also known as the White-flowering Raspberry, and the Salmonberry.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Rosales
Family: Rosaceae
Genus: Rubus
Species: parviflorus



Family Plantaginaceae -- Plantain

A flower in the Penstemon genus, species not identified yet. Found at the Fountain Creek Nature Center on 14 June 2009.

Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Lamiales
Family: Plantaginaceae
Genus: Penstemon



Family Onagraceae, Primrose

Evening primrose. The exact species not determined yet. Found at the Fountain Creek Nature Center on 14 June 2009.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Myrtales
Family: Onagraceae
Genus: Oenothera

Another one that appears to be in the Evening Primrose family, found at the Fountain Creek Nature Center on 1 June 2010.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
(unranked): Eudicots
Order: Myrtales
Family: Onagraceae (Evening primrose)
Genus: Oenothera
and there are about 125 species within that genus.


Family Orobanchaceae

This was found in Elbert County, Colorado on 20 May 2009. It is a paintbrush flower, in the Genus Castilleja. There are about 200 species in this genus, but this is probably one of the Indian Paintbrush, and might even be Wyoming's state flower which is the Narrow-leafed Indian Paintbrush, Castilleja linariifolia. On the other hand, it also looks like the Castilleja miniata, Greater red Indian paintbrush, which is supposed to be common in the Rocky Mountain area.

The second picture, taken in Park County Colorado on 31 August 2010, near Elevenmile Lake, looks like the same plant.

Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Lamiales
Family: Orobanchaceae
Genus: Castilleja



Family Dipsacaceae, Teasel

This is the Common Teasel, Dipsacus fullonum. It is also known as Fuller's teasel and wild teasel. Found in the Fountain Creek Nature Center on 25 July 2009. The second picture is from 23 July 2009, same place.

Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Dipsacales
Family: Dipsacaceae
Genus: Dipsacus
Species: D. fullonum


Family Amaryllidaceae -- Amaryllis

Alyssa Erickson took these pictures in August 2009 on a hiking trail near Colorado Springs.

Erika Kaszczyszyn from www.longnamedgirl.com says this is a wild Nodding Onion.

Kingdom: Plantae
clade: Angiosperms
clade: Monocots
Order: Asparagales
Family: Amaryllidaceae
Subfamily: Allioideae
Genus: Allium
Species: A. cernuum


Family Cannabaceae -- Hemp, Hops and Hackberries

This one is a vine, climbing on other plants. It is at the Fountain Creek Regional Park, Fountain CO, on 16 August 2010.

Erika Kaszczyszyn from www.longnamedgirl.com says this is a hops vine.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
(unranked): Eudicots
Order: Rosales
Family: Cannabaceae
Genus: Humulus


Family Lamiaceae -- Mint family.

Alyssa Erickson took this picture in August 2009 on a hiking trail near Colorado Springs. It is in the Monarda genus, and commonly known as Bee Balm, Horsemint, Oswego tea, or Bergamot. The specific species is still to be determined.

Becky Riggle of Thornton, CO provided the identification.

Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Lamiales
Family: Lamiaceae
Genus: Monarda


This was found just west of Manitou Springs, El Paso County Colorado on 30 July 2013. It seems to be a good match to the genus Agastache (Giant Hyssop), but I have not narrowed it down to the species yet. Probably Agastache foeniculum, the Blue Giant Hyssop.

Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Lamiales
Family: Lamiaceae
Genus: Agastache



FamilyFumariaceae -- fumitory, fumewort, or bleeding-heart

This one was photographed by Alyssa Erickson on a hiking trail near Colorado Springs on 9 May 2012. It is known as a Bleeding heart.

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Ranunculales
Family: Fumariaceae
Genus: Lamprocapnos
Species: L. spectabilis

Flowers not yet identified.

Unknown flower, Fountain Creek Nature Center on 8 June 2009. A small flower, low to the ground.
Unknown flower, Fountain Creek Nature Center on 8 June 2009.
Unknown flower, Elbert County, Colorado on 20 May 2009.
What is this? Near Eleven Mile lake, Teller county Colorado. The first picture was taken 2 July 2007. The second picture was taken 15 June 2009 at the same place, and shows better detail of the earlier stages of the flower.

It has the same structure as the purplish flower growning nearby, and shown in the next flower.


What is this? Near Eleven Mile lake, Teller county Colorado. This picture was taken 15 June 2009 near the white flower above, and has the same structure as the white flower.

It looks quite a bit like the Moss Campion, Silene acaulis. That flower has pinkish-purple flowers, rarely white, and grows mainly above timberline. (These were found at about 9,000 feet, not above timberline, but definitely high altitude.)

It also looks quite a bit like some species of Locoweed, Oxytropis. The leaf structure may also be more similar to the Locoweed.

Alyssa Erickson took these pictures in July 2009 on a hiking trail near Colorado Springs. Identification has not been made.
This was found at Brush Hollow reservoir on 21 May 2010. Identification has not been made.
This one is a tall plant, about 3 feet tall. It is at the Fountain Creek Regional Park, Fountain CO, on 16 August 2010. The stamen (male part of flower) are long, extending well beyond the flower. Similar to a Hyacinth? Maybe a Wild Hyacinth?