Spring Wildflowers Along the Willamette River

This is likely to become a series of posts about wildflowers. I’m very interested in our native plants, wildflowers and edible plants in particular.  These aren’t all necessarily indigenous.  I’ll be looking for other varieties, and hopefully I have a camera handy when I find them!

girl under cow parsnip

Cow Parsnip (Heracleum maximum)

This native plant towers above my daughter’s head with large umbrella shaped flowers.  Don’t mess with any lacy white flowering plants having purplish splotches on the stems!  Hemlocks and Giant Hogweed are very poisonous.  This one, however is perfectly safe.  Queen Anne’s lace (Daucus carota) or wild carrot is pretty much safe also, but a wildly invasive species.

cow parsnip umbrella

Lupine Not sure which variety.  May be native.Kincaid's Lupine

Kincaid's Lupine

Kincaid's Lupine and Willamette river
Common snowberry (Symphoricarpos albus)

This is a native plant, indigenous maybe even to the Pacific coast, specifically.  The shrub has white berries (poisonous) in the summer time.
Fringecup (Tellima grandiflora)

These flowers are so interesting!  They have deeply fringed petals that lay opened back against the ovary! The one-sided spikes emerge from a cluster of heart shaped basal flowers.  They are native to the West Coast.  (The leaves rising up in the photo are grass.)

Field Mustard (Brassica rapa) Not native.


Field Clover(Trifolium campestre) Not native.

Red Clover (Trifolium pretense) Not native.

English Plantain (Plantago lanceolata) and Sheep Sorrel (Rumex acetosella) Both not native.
Purslane and Curly Dock
Forget-me-not (Myosotis sylvatica)DSC_0134
Common Vetch (Vicia sativa) Not native.vetch
Woolly Vetch (Vicia villosa) Not native. Woolly Vetch (Vicia villosa)

 Shasta Daisy (Chrysanthemum maximum) Not native.

shasta daisy
Coast Manroot (Marah oreganus) wild cucumber (not edible) Native.DSC_0065
Thimbleberry (Rubus parviflorus) Native and edible.  There will be red berries, similar to raspberries, but with more seeds.DSC_0292
Himalayan blackberry (Rubus discolor) Not native.

This is the same blackberry as those whose briars you have probably been trying to pull out of your yard and garden.  It’s highly invasive.  But, seriously, who can complain when the plant produces such prolific and yummy fruit?  When they ripen in August, we don’t pass a single bush without stopping to graze. 
My boy in the grasses. boy on riverfront grassland with bike helmet


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