Serving the greater Bozeman area, including Gallatin, Park and Sweet Grass counties.
Interested in Native Plant Landscaping in our area? Click here.
2022 Field Trips
Late May or early June – Plant survey of the Crazy D Ranch (Melville, Sweet Grass County). All day. Jeff Copeland and Matt Lavin will lead a field trip on the Crazy D Ranch, a large, conservation cattle ranch. Ranch habitats can be roughly categorized as: native grasslands, agricultural lands/disturbed grasslands (tame wheatgrass/dryland alfalfa), sagebrush steppe, riparian, and wetland. Sweet Grass Creek runs through the property, with cottonwood gallery forest, and beavers are actively being encouraged to pioneer the area. The ranch operators are interested in MNPS visiting and conducting a plant survey. The exact date of the field trip is pending and will be determined after a preliminary reconnaissance of the area during middle to late May. Please contact Jeff Copeland ([email protected]) or Matt Lavin ([email protected]) to be put on a list of prospective participants, who will be notified during the latter half of May about the exact date of the field trip.
Saturday, June 4 – Blooming at the Buffalo Jump (Bozeman). 9:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Join Kelly Ranch owner and Montana Land Reliance Greater Yellowstone Manager Kathryn Kelly to explore the Kelly Ranch along the Gallatin River west of Bozeman. This private ranch includes lush cottonwood gallery forest, grassland, and sagebrush/juniper steppe habitats. The functioning ranch, which includes well-preserved historic buildings and a pre-historic buffalo jump, is protected by a conservation easement with the Montana Land Reliance. Easy two- to three-hour walk on a gravel road, two-tracks and cattle trails. Sign up with leader Jeff Copeland at: [email protected] or 406-539-6029.
Saturday, July 9 – Wild about Wildflower Identification (Bridger). 8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Join botanist Ryan Quire for a stroll through vibrant wildflower displays in the sagebrush steppe and montane forest slopes of the Bridger Mountains. The Shaft House Trail offers a diversity of plant species, ecosystems, and spectacular views of the Bridger and Crazy Mountains. The hike will be approximately five miles, is moderately strenuous, and gains around 1,500 feet in elevation. The group will practice keying out a handful of wildflower species observed along the way using the Manual of Montana Vascular Plants by Peter Lesica. Weather in the mountains is unpredictable, so be sure to bring extra clothing for potential rain/wind. Please wear hiking boots for comfort over uneven terrain. Bring your curiosity, water, lunch/snacks, sunscreen, a camera, 10x or 20x hand lens, and a copy of Manual of Montana Vascular Plants, if you have one. Limit 15 people. For more information and registration, contact: Ryan Quire at: [email protected] or 502-330-8433.
Tuesday, July 12 – Native Plant Gardens (Bozeman). 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. Join landscape designer Linda Iverson to tour two of her plantings in south Bozeman and discuss the principles she followed and the “lessons learned” at one garden that is 20 years old, and a second that’s less than five years old. The group will move from the beds at the entrance to the Museum of the Rockies to the Pollinator Garden on the Gallagator Trail that is maintained by the Valley of Flowers Chapter-MNPS. Register by contacting Linda at: [email protected]; 406-932-5840.
Wednesday, August 3 – Plants for Birds Demo Garden at Story Mill Community Park (Bozeman). 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. Doug McSpadden will be our guide as we tour this bird-friendly garden, installed in 2020 and funded in part by a small grant from MNPS. The garden showcases trees, shrubs and flowers that provide benefits to birds and pollinators. Most of the plants are native to Montana, and require less water and maintenance. As urban growth and subdivisions alter the native landscape, bird-friendly yards are becoming extremely important in the survival of our native songbirds, bees and butterflies. See examples of some of the best landscaping plants for the Gallatin Valley area, and visit with gardeners from Sacajawea Audubon with your landscaping questions. Participants can also visit the nearby “Food Forest” and walk in the Story Mill Park Nature Preserve. To register, contact Gretchen Rupp at: [email protected] or 406-586-8363.
Video recordings from some of our winter 2020-2021 Zoom programs are still available on our Valley of Flower YouTube channel.
The Valley Flowers Chapter maintains a native-plant garden in central Bozeman, to demonstrate the principles of gardening to benefit pollinators. Here is a fact sheet about the garden.
Field Trip Report
On a May day a while back, 9 curious folk joined Jeff Copeland to see what was in bloom in the foothills east of Bozeman. Quite a lot, as it turned out – Denise Montgomery compiled a list of 48 bloomers, nearly all of which the collective brain was able to identify to species. Chapter members look forward to these field trips, and newcomers are very welcome!
BLOOMS OF MOUNT ELLIS TRAIL – GALLATIN COUNTY, MONTANA
MAY 23, 2015
BOTANICAL NAME COMMON NAME
Amelanchier alnifolia – Serviceberry
Anemone multifida – Cut-leaf Anemone
Anemone patens (Pulsitilla patens) – Pasque Flower
Antennaria microphylla rosea – Rosy pussytoes
Antennaria microphylla – Pussytoes
Arabis lyallii – Lyall’s Rockcress
Arnica cordifolia – Heartleaf Arnica
Balsamorhiza sagittata – Arrowleaf balsamroot
Castilleja suphurea – Sulphur Paintbrush
Cerastium sp. – Chickweed
Claytonia sp. – Spring beauty
Clematis hirsuitissima – Sugar Bowl Clematis
Clematis occidentalis – Western Blue Virgin’s Bower
Delphinium bicolor – Little Larkspur
Dodecatheon sp. – Shooting Star
Erythronium grandiflorum – Glacier Lily
Fragaria virginiana – Strawberry
Frasera speciosa – Green Gentian/Monument Plant
Fritillaria pudica – Yellow Bells
Geranium viscossisimum – Sticky geranium
Geum triflorum – Prairie smoke
Hackelia floribunda – Many -flowered Stickseed/Forget-me-not
Hydrophyllum capitatum – Ball-headed waterleaf