Bear Grass
~Xerophyllum tenax~
Bear Grass Wildflowers are one of the iconic wildflowers of Glacier National Park



Bear Grass blooms on an irregular schedule. This irregular bloom cycle varies anywhere from 5 years to up to 10 years apart. When Bear Grass blooms and it is the primary bloom cycle the blossoms can cover the entire mountainside in a white mist. Early morning or just before sundown give the best visual effect of these striking wildflowers. Particularlly at or near sundown the light filtering through the bear grass blooms give the appearance of small, soft creamy lights along the mountain side.

bear grass bear grass


bear grass

Light from sunset highlights the bear grass blossoms, on the hillside above Logan Pass in Glacier National Park.

Bear Grass rhizomes tend to be fire resistant, which results in rapid regrowth after fires. Individual plants can live to twenty years old, and grow as tall as five feet.

"Flowers with six tepals and six stamens are borne in a terminal raceme." wiki
see my photo top right if your interested in what a flower with a 'terminal raceme' looks.

The best wildflower guide that I use is

Northern Rocky Mountain Wildflowers (Falcon Guides Wildflowers).