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Feb 18 2012

Right. You Asked For It. Flowers and Geology Are Served

And here I was afraid it wasn’t nice to torment readers with pictures of unidentified flowers that subsequently drive them mad as they chase through botanical clues… Well, you say you don’t mind. I’ll take you at your word. I disavow any responsibility for subsequent therapy bills.

These shouldn’t be difficult, anyway. If I wasn’t looking for something to brighten up your night twenty minutes before I have to go see Tommy, and if I wasn’t alternating between turn-of-the-last-century mystery literature and Geology of Oregon in my free time, I could probably manage these myself. They were snapped on the Trail of the Molten Land at Lava Butte, Lava Lands Visitor Center.

Mystery Lava Flowers

Aren’t they bonza? Something in the sage family, I should think. Totally fearless on baking hot, black, blasted terrain.

Mystery Flowers and Mountains

Here we have an utterly marvelous view of our mystery flowers across the lava flow toward some fine examples of Cascades volcanoes. The Sisters are in there, and I believe the one standing off by hisself is Bachelor, although I wouldn’t swear to it. Lockwood can specify for us.

The views from Bend, Oregon are, quite frankly, spectacular enough to make me want to move there. Sweeping vistas of lava fields and forests, with peaks in the background, and ponderosa forests giving the whole place that dry-land pine savor that makes you breathe deep and stand tall. It’s gorgeous. And I’d wax lyrical about it, only I’ve got a musical to get my arse to, now that the cat’s decided to make her own way out of my lap rather than make me court death getting free.

Enjoy, my darlings, and I shall return to regale you with tales of Tommy.

6 comments

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  1. 1
    lockwooddewitt

    Yes, I do believe that’s Bachelor- at first I was thinking Broken Top, but that isn’t as pristine and uneroded as the southern peak in this photo. I think Broken Top is the one between the Sisters and Bachelor, with just a smidgen of snow visible near the summit. And I’m kind of guessing here, but the flowers might be rabbit brush (bush?). I’d bet Silver Fox could tell in a glance.

  2. 2
    Achrachno

    It’s “rubber rabbitbrush” Ericameria nauseosa, I think. Unless you folks have some very similar species that’s unknown to me up there in the NW. AKA Chrysothamnus nauseosus. Common in the Great Basin.

  3. 3
    Silver Fox

    That looks like rabbitbrush, Ericameria nauseosa, formerly Chrysothamnus nauseosus.

  4. 4
    Silver Fox

    There also is a dark green rabbitbrush, Chrysothamnus viscidiflorus. I think yours are the former (earlier comment), judging by the photos of it on basalt, where it looks light green. The light green version has tiny fuzzy hairs on the leaves, making it look similar to the color of sagebrush.

    If this plant blooms in spring, it isn’t rabbitbrush. Rabbitbrush blooms in August to September or October, earliest would be in July.

  5. 5
    lockwooddewitt

    This was late August of last summer, so that’s consistent with rabbitbrush, and this spot is just north (by ~50 mi) of the northern edge of basin and range- which isn’t exactly synonymous with “Great Basin,” but mostly overlapping.

  6. 6
    F [i'm not here, i'm gone]

    I so wish that this sort of geological variety were easily accessible to me.

    From my limited resources and unstudied eye, that does look most like rubber rabbitbrush, of a group of similar species.

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