elizabeth

16 Aug 2018 55 views
 
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photoblog image Old Man of the Mountains

Old Man of the Mountains

Alpine Sunflower, Sun God

(Hymenoxys grandiflora)

 

The Old-man-of-the-mountain common name comes from its wooly stem and leaves, sometimes much hairier than can be seen here. The plant is usually 3 or 4 inches tall, but may be as tall as 12 inches.  "Grandiflora" means large-flowered. Not only does this plant have the largest flower of any in the Hymenoxys genus, it is one of the largest in its alpine environment, frequently more than three inches across.

 

In spite of the name Alpine Sunflower, this plant is different from "true sunflowers" (Helianthus) and some other members of the family in that the flower of Helianthus will turn toward the sun, following it from east to west as the sun rises and sets. Hymenoxys grandiflora continues to face east, even as the sun marches across the sky. There is speculation that this may be an adaptation that protects it from the violent afternoon thunderstorms which typically arrive from the west in the Rocky Mountains.

 

Photos taken on the Continental Divide.  Above 12,000 feet.

 

photoblog image Colorado Trip 117 copy.jpg 

 

Old Man of the Mountains

Alpine Sunflower, Sun God

(Hymenoxys grandiflora)

 

The Old-man-of-the-mountain common name comes from its wooly stem and leaves, sometimes much hairier than can be seen here. The plant is usually 3 or 4 inches tall, but may be as tall as 12 inches.  "Grandiflora" means large-flowered. Not only does this plant have the largest flower of any in the Hymenoxys genus, it is one of the largest in its alpine environment, frequently more than three inches across.

 

In spite of the name Alpine Sunflower, this plant is different from "true sunflowers" (Helianthus) and some other members of the family in that the flower of Helianthus will turn toward the sun, following it from east to west as the sun rises and sets. Hymenoxys grandiflora continues to face east, even as the sun marches across the sky. There is speculation that this may be an adaptation that protects it from the violent afternoon thunderstorms which typically arrive from the west in the Rocky Mountains.

 

Photos taken on the Continental Divide.  Above 12,000 feet.

 

photoblog image Colorado Trip 117 copy.jpg 

 

comments (12)

This flower is one of my favourites, nicely captured Elizabeth.
Elizabeth Croston Buckalew: Thanks so much, Frank!!
  • sherri
  • Little Rock, Arkansas, USA
  • 16 Aug 2018, 03:41
beautiful wildflowers - my fav
Elizabeth Croston Buckalew: Thank you, Sherri!!
  • Chris
  • Not Nowhere
  • 16 Aug 2018, 06:27
Charming stuff. I don't think we have anything similar over here, more's the pity..
Elizabeth Croston Buckalew: I do love the unique flora and fauna that survive in the extremes... tundra & deserts...
  • Philine
  • Germany
  • 16 Aug 2018, 06:39
They look like hardy flowers! I like the different names of them.
Elizabeth Croston Buckalew: They are, indeed! Me, too, Philine! Thank you!
These are beautiful flowers E.
Elizabeth Croston Buckalew: Oh I think so, Bill! I love things that are lovely and mighty at the same time!
  • Alan
  • Great Britain (UK)
  • 16 Aug 2018, 07:54
Anotherr surprise that something like this can survive in such hostile environment.
Elizabeth Croston Buckalew: Isn't it wonderful! I love things that are pretty and strong at the same time!
Magnifique cet endroit ..bonne journée à  toi
Elizabeth Croston Buckalew: It is, I agree! Thank you, Claudine!
  • gutteridge
  • Somewhere in deep space
  • 16 Aug 2018, 08:17
A bolder flower with its height for these parts.
Elizabeth Croston Buckalew: Lovely and strong!
  • Anne
  • United Kingdom
  • 16 Aug 2018, 16:15
What lovely flowers, two great pictures!
Elizabeth Croston Buckalew: Thank you, Anne!
The flower picture is good but I like the lower one even better.

Sadly still no response to my four SC internal system problem reports and three emails regarding the problem with my blog, I can only hope it is because they are on holiday, it is frustrating not being able to do virtually anything at all.
Elizabeth Croston Buckalew: Thank you, Brian - much appreciated!
I'm so sorry for your problems... have you contacted John?
john.claeys@vizero.com
I have never had the chance to see any alpine flower, these are just wonderful
Elizabeth Croston Buckalew: I love being high up in mountains- it's as special as the desert.... unique flora & fauna in either place... Thank you, Martin!
Love that last fact about the backs to the west. I continue to really love the clover in the shots.

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camera Canon EOS Rebel T6s
exposure mode aperture priority
shutterspeed 1/125s
aperture f/8.0
sensitivity ISO400
focal length 78.0mm
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