Mertensia alpina

(Alpine Bluebells)

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Mertensia alpina, Straight Creek Trail, Summit Co. 5017

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Mertensia alpina, Straight Creek Trail, Summit Co. 5023

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Mertensia alpina, Loveland Pass, Clear Creek Co. 9321

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Mertensia alpina, Loveland Pass, Clear Creek Co. N2017

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Mertensia alpina, Straight Creek Trail, Summit Co. 5024

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Mertensia alpina, Straight Creek Trail, Summit Co. 5026

Scientific Name Mertensia alpina USDA PLANTS Symbol MEAL7
Common Name Alpine Bluebells ITIS Taxonomic Serial No. 31665
Family Boraginaceae (Forget-me-not) SEINet
Reference
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Description Life zones and habitat: Subalpine to alpine (11000 to 14000 ft). Meadows, tundra, rocky open areas.
Plant: Leafy perennial 2 to 8 inches tall, may be branched from base, stems prostrate or upright.
Leaves: Basal and stem leaves, linear-lanceolate to oblong, 1/2 to 2-3/4 inches long, short hairs on upper surfaces, smooth beneath, lateral veins obscure.
Inflorescence: Clusters of small bell-shaped blossoms about 1/3-inch long atop stems, often pointing upward; corolla tubes with yellowish centers and 5 deep blue lobes; 5 pointed sepals united at base; anthers do not extend beyond tubes.
Bloom Period: June to August.
References: "Flora of Colorado" by Jennifer Ackerfield and Montana Field Guide, etal.
BONAP Distribution Map
Colorado Status:
Native

© Tom Lebsack 2022

Banner photo: Ten Mile Range and Rhodiola integrifolia (King’s Crown) in Summit County