Garden Photo of the Day

Utah Wildflowers

Enjoying nature’s garden

close up of orange and purple wildflowers with mountains behind

My name is Anna Lindquist, and I’m a personal and professional plant nerd based in the Intermountain West. I’m especially enamored with native plants and am constantly in awe of the magical vignettes created by native plant communities. Though I’ve tried my best to replicate them in gardens, I’ve found that nature always does it best. I moved to Utah two years ago and unfortunately do not currently have space to garden at my rental property, so I have had to rely even more on public lands for my nature fix. Being at the confluence of multiple eco-regions, Utah encompasses a little bit of everything. These photos showcase the beautiful diversity of plants found across the state, from the desert to the high alpine.

close up of native white flowersCalochortusEscalante desert, Pueblo land. Calochortus is a genus of bulbs native to western North America, with beautiful, intricately patterned flowers.

close up of tiny white flowers growing in sandOrobancheEscalante desert, Pueblo land. Orobanche are parasitic plants, with no leaves, taking nutrients from the host plant they attach to, and only appearing aboveground to flower.

close up of orange and purple wildflowers with mountains behindCastillejaUinta mountains, Eastern Shoshone land. Castilleja are native to western North America, with small flowers tucked between colorful, showy bracts. They are considered “hemiparasites,” meaning that while they attach to the roots of other plants to take some water and possibly nutrients, they also have leaves to photosynthesize on their own. Often difficult to cultivate in gardens, they are a beautiful part of western wild landscapes.

close up of bright yellow flowers growing over a rockEriogonumUinta Mountains, Eastern Shoshone land. Eriogonum, also called wild buckwheats, are fantastic garden plants for dry western gardens, thriving in very arid conditions and producing many clusters of showy flowers, usually in shades of yellow.

view of hills and mountains with fall foliageAspens and maples in their autumn glory—Wasatch Front, Eastern Shoshone and Goshute land. One of the displays of nature that gardens can never come close to matching is fall color at its finest.

close up of bright yellow trout liliesErythronium (possibly Erythronium grandiflorum, Zones 4–9)—Wasatch Front, Eastern Shoshone and Goshute land. Also known as trout lilies, these bulbs are native to nearly every part of North America, with attractive mottled foliage and lily-like flowers.

close up of plant covered in seed heads with mountains behindRabbitbrush (Chrysothamnus) seeds—Utah west desert, Ute land. These shrubs native to the arid west have clouds of yellow flowers in the summer that then transform into these clouds of fluffy white seeds in the fall.

If you want to see more of Anna’s beautiful photography and celebration of western native plants, check out her Instagram: @anna_linden_twig


Have a garden you’d like to share?

Have photos to share? We’d love to see your garden, a particular collection of plants you love, or a wonderful garden you had the chance to visit!

To submit, send 5-10 photos to [email protected] along with some information about the plants in the pictures and where you took the photos. We’d love to hear where you are located, how long you’ve been gardening, successes you are proud of, failures you learned from, hopes for the future, favorite plants, or funny stories from your garden.

Have a mobile phone? Tag your photos on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter with #FineGardening!

Do you receive the GPOD by email yet? Sign up here.

View Comments


  1. nwphilagardener 04/25/2024

    Thank you, Anna. What compelling images of plants completely new to us. You give us a chance to stand back from our fussed over home gardens and take us into an adventure of sights not often seen. I appreciate that you've identified the indigenous people whose land grows these wonders. that you have artfully captured in stellar photography.

  2. barbmrgich 04/25/2024

    WOW! This is one of the most beautiful and informative posts I have ever seen on this site. I loved every photo. Thank you for this great information. The only plant I recognized was the Trout Lily.

  3. MohawkValley 04/25/2024

    Nothing short of spectacular . Nuff said ...

  4. User avater
    user-7007816 04/25/2024

    Thank you for sharing. What an amazing collection!

  5. User avater
    simplesue 04/25/2024

    Utah - wow! Those Orobanche plants that tap into other plants plants learn to do to survive in the desert! Interesting post! It does seem easy to get "your nature fix" in Utah even without your own garden.

  6. btucker9675 04/25/2024

    LOVE!!! So beautiful and interesting - always something new to learn. Thanks for sharing this!

  7. [email protected] 04/25/2024

    Such a different kind of beauty! Having lived so much of my gardening life in the PNW, these are almost all new to me. Thanks!

  8. Heirmaked 05/06/2024

    Thank you for sharing these beautiful flowers with me. Remember to visit four colors to make you more excited when playing thinking games.

Log in or create an account to post a comment.

Related Articles

The Latest