Anemone occidentalis  


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The Windflowers are ubiquitous plants of the alpine environment.  Varieties of these plants are found from streambeds and boggy mountain seeps to quite dry rocky locations.  Anemone occidentalis is found abundantly throughout most alpine meadows.  It blooms early in the year and therefore is generally familiar to most people when in seed.  The large hairy seedheads are known as Towhead Babies.  However, even in midsummer, this plant can be found in bloom in snowmelt areas.  The large creamy-white flowers and finely cut leaves are unmistakable.  Occasionally, as shown here, the young flowers are quite yellow though they mature to white.  Away, from the wetter areas two other windflowers are frequently found.  These are A. drummondii (see hike photos) and A. multifida.  The latter, not uncommonly, has brightly-coloured pink to red flowers, while the former has white flowers.  Often these three species are blue on the dorsal surface of the flowers.