North Cascades



Dryas octopetala
Dryas is found on the east slopes of the N Cascades, rarely in the south Cascades, more common northward to Asia and Europe.  Here it is seen growing in lichen-blackened granite high above treeline.

Dryas octopetala var. hookeriana
A member of the rose family, it has leathery leaves that are scalloped, edges rolled under.

Eritrichium nanum

The Alpine forget-me-not grows in the Rockies and north to Europe but in Washington has only been found on a single mountain top on the east slope of the North Cascades.  Very rare in Washington.

Draba paysonii
Drabas flower early and are tiny.  A plant 4"/10cm across can be considered large.  Olympics, Wenatchees, and Cascades.

Saxifraga oppositifolia
Purple saxifrage or Sax opp grows in the Olympics and in the Cascades only as far south as the Goat Rocks.  Most often found growing in vertical north-facing cliffs, it can sometimes also be found growing in open ground of the east slopes of the North Cascades.....
Flowers erupt from the center of the opposite leaved rosettes.  A rare sight as this species is likely to flower in June when most approaches to the high country are still blocked with snow.

Aster sibericus
Now known as Eurybia merita, this is rare in Washington though common northward.  Spreads by rhizome.  Flowering August/September.

Campanula lasiocarpa
The Alaska harebell has a flower a bit larger than the common harebell.  The leaves and sepals are also toothed.  West side of northern Cascades.  Flowering in July and August.  Rare in Washington.

Anemone drummondii
This small anemone is found both in the Cascades and the Olympics.  The petals are white with a blue reverse.

Erigeron salishii
Endemic
Similar to Erigeron compositus though the leaves are usually smaller.  Limited to the Wenatchee Mountains, North Cascades, and Vancouver Island.  Flowers may be white or lavender.

Dryas drummondii
More common in the Rockies and farther north, found in NE Washington and a single site in the North Cascades and one site in the Olympics.  Rare in our state.
Short stems 3"/8cm, nodding yellow flowers that do not fully open.  All other alpines open their flowers skyward except this one. 

Phacelia sericea
Silkly Phacelia is often encountered in high, open screes.  Cascades, Wenatchees, Olympics.

Silene acaulis
The moss campion is a circumboreal species in northern latitudes and as far south as the Olympics and Washington Cascades.  It has been reported to grow to a diameter of 7in/18cm across in 25 years....
..... so this plant could be more than two centuries old.

Cassiope tetragona
Occasionally found in the North Cascades.  The more frequently encountered Cassiopes are more often growing in lower subalpine areas not far from tree line.  This one grows high beyond the tree limit. 

Ranunculus eschscholtzii
When in flower, melting snow is never more than a few feet away.

Saxifraga tolmiei
Fleshy leaves resemble a sedum.  Cool, often moist, rock screes at high elevation.  Cascades and Olympics.

Castilleja rupicola
Foliage lacerated, finely cut.  The true flowers prominently protrude beyond the fire-like bracts.  High mountains of the Cascades and sometimes also at low elevations. 

 
Comments