Blooming Gardner’s Yampah in Southwestern Montana

/, Centennial Valley, Montana, Red Rock Lakes National Wildlife Refuge/Blooming Gardner’s Yampah in Southwestern Montana

Blooming Gardner's YampahBlooming Gardner’s Yampah – Nikon D500, f10, 1/500, ISO 500, Nikkor 500mm VR with 1.4x TC, natural light

While I am photographing birds I also look around for other things in nature including wildflowers when they are in bloom, everything in nature is connected and I try to be connected too when I am out in the field.

Earlier this year in July I spent some time in the Centennial Valley of southwestern Montana where I photographed this Gardner’s Yampah near Elk Lake. Gardner’s Yampah (Perideridia gairdneri) is also known as Common Yampah, western false caraway, squawroot and Gairdner’s Yampah. The umbels of these white wildflowers remind me of Queen Anne’s Lace, a non-native wildflower I used to see often in the eastern U.S..

This plant provided an important food source for many Native American tribes including the Paiute, Blackfoot and Cheyenne. Gardner’s Yampah has tuberous roots like potatoes that can be steamed, roasted, eaten fresh out of the ground, dried and ground to make a flour or it can be made into a mush.

I have my friend Eve Wills to thank for the identification of this wildflower. Eve lives in Dillon, Montana and works as a Soil Scientist.  Eve and her husband Kurt Westenbarger own WalkAbout West and give  guided tours throughout the most beautiful areas of the Western United States.  Thanks Eve!

Life is good.



  1. Utahbooklover September 27, 2017 at 8:04 pm

    Beautiful plant and interesting info thanks to your friend Eve.

  2. Patty Chadwick September 25, 2017 at 4:23 pm

    Queen Anne’s lace has tiny, deep wine-colored structures in the center of each white whorl…these don’t do they???

  3. Elephants Child September 25, 2017 at 2:40 pm

    A gorgeous thing – and yes, I though Queen Anne’s Lace immediately. Always good to be educated.

  4. Patty Chadwick September 25, 2017 at 11:46 am

    I love your “other than birds” pictures…landscapes, cloudscapes, animals, flowers and insects…your plant and flower photos can’t be beat! These beautiful mounds of flowering lace are a perfect example….

  5. April Olson September 25, 2017 at 9:38 am

    I always thought it was Queen Ann’s Lace, (plants are not my specialty) now I will be doing some reading into how to tell the difference.

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