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It's Wildflower Season on Mountain Peaks, But Alpine Plants May Soon Miss the Date

Posted Jul 14 2012 5:38am

Photo of flowers and buds on rockcress in the Colorado Rocky Mountains.

July brings a riot of color--a rainbow-hued carpet of wildflowers--to the high peaks of the Rockies.

In these mountain environments, however, plants have a narrow window of opportunity to set their buds.

Now, in a changing climate, that hurry-up-and-flower date is moving ever earlier on the calendar. How quickly can plants respond?

The alpine growing season in places like the Rockies doesn't begin until snows melt, sometimes as late as June. Snows may fall again by ...

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This is an NSF News item.

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