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Home > Landscaping > Native Plants for Western Washington Gardens and Restoration Projects


Native Plants for Subalpine Elevations

Abies amabilis
Pacific Silver Fir
An attractive conifer with short dark green needles. Tolerant of shade.
Achillea millefolium
Yarrow
Aromatic herb with delicate fern-like leaves and flat-topped clusters of white flowers.
Height: Found at nearly all elevations but most common at lower elevations.
Anaphalis margaritacea
Pearly Everlasting
Clump forming, perennial herb with small withering basal leaves and papery white flower clusters.
Aquilegia formosa
Red Columbine
Delicate perennial with large nodding, star-shaped, spurred flowers that are a favorite of hummingbirds.
Arctostaphylos uva-ursi
Kinnikinnick, Bearberry
A mat-forming evergreen shrub producing lovely pink flowers that later turn into red berries.
Athyrium filix-femina
Lady Fern
Tall, delicate, light-green fronds from a basal cluster.
Height: All elevations except alpine.
Caltha biflora
Marsh Marigold
Perennial herb with large white flowers held above broadly rounded leaves; grows in wet subalpine meadows.
Height: 900-3300 meters elevation.
Campanula rotundifolia
Harebell
Delicate stems topped by large, nodding bell-shaped blue flowers.
Castilleja miniata
Red Paintbrush
An attractive wildflower with red brush-like flower clusters.
Height: Can be found from low to high elevations, but most common in the subalpine.
Cerastium arvense
Field Chickweed
Deschampsia cespitosa
Tufted Hairgrass
Densely tufted perennial grass.
Height: Common at all elevations.
Festuca rubra
Red Fescue
Perennial grass with thread-like leaves forming small patches.
Height: Below 2500 meters.
Fragaria vesca
Woodland strawberry
A wild strawberry with thin leaves, low, short runners, white flowers, and small red strawberries.
Fragaria virginiana
Wild strawberry
Low growing wild strawberry with runners, white flowers, and small red strawberries.
Heuchera micrantha
Small-flowered Alumroot
Grows from rhizomes with one to many flower stems that are reddish and covered with fine hairs and topped with delicate panicles of tiny white flowers.
Hordeum brachyantherum
Meadow Barley
Grass with erect stems that are bent at the base and sometimes hairy on the leaf sheaths.
Juncus ensifolius
Daggerleaf Rush
Larix occidentalis
Western Larch
Height: Frequent along the east side of the Cascade Mountains.
Lilium columbianum
Tiger Lily
Luetkea pectinata
Partridgefoot
Low-growing ground cover with spikes of small white flowers.
Mimulus lewisii
Pink Monkey-flower
A clump forming perennial with large pinkish-red flowers.
Nothochelone nemorosa
Woodland Penstemon
Nuphar luteum ssp. polysepalum
Yellow Pond-Lily
An aquatic water lily with large, round, floating leaves and fleshy, yellow flowers held at the water surface.
Penstemon davidsonii
Davidson's Penstemon
Low mat-forming perennial with small evergreen leaves and large blue-purple tubular flowers.
Penstemon fruticosus
Lowbush Penstemon
Spreading shrub with numerous tubular purple flowers.
Penstemon serrulatus
Coast Penstemon
Perennial, sprawling sub-shrub from a woody stem base, with large purple tubular flowers at stem tips.
Phlox diffusa
Spreading Phlox
Mat forming perennial with showy white to pink flowers.
Pinus contorta
Shore Pine
Short pine tree, often with crooked trunk and bushy habit.
Platanthera dilatata
White Rein-Orchid, Bog Candle
Perennial orchid with spikes of white flowers from tuber-like roots.
Polemonium pulcherrimum
Showy Jacob's-ladder
Taprooted perennial with mostly basal leaves and blue bell-shaped flowers.
Pteridium aquilinum
Bracken Fern
Rhizomous perennial fern with large, much-divided solitary fronds,
Rubus parviflorus
Thimbleberry
Unarmed spreading shrub with large white flowers. Usually forms dense thickets.
Sedum oreganum
Oregon Stonecrop
Sorbus sitchensis
Sitka-Mountain Ash
Sparganium angustifolium
Narrowleaf Bur-reed
Sparganium eurycarpum
Broadfruit Bur-reed
Spiraea densiflora
Subalpine Spirea
Low mound-forming shrub with rounded clusters of intense pink tiny flowers.
Tiarella trifoliata
Foamflower
Herb with erect or ascending stems and spikes of dainty white flowers.
Tsuga mertensiana
Mountain Hemlock
Slow growing evergreen conifer.
Viola adunca
Early-blue Violet
A blue flowered violet that grows from slender rhizomes and is stemless in the early season, later grow upright stem.
Xerophyllum tenax
Beargrass
Forms a tall grass-like clump of tough leaves topped by a large dense cluster of white flowers.


The landscaping and restoration information provided on this page is taken from the Starflower Foundation Image Herbarium. All photographs © Starflower Foundation unless otherwise noted.