Rare Plants

Velvetleaf Blueberry, NPS photoAlpine Glacier Poppy, NPS photoPink Corydalis, NPS photo

The diverse habitats of the Crown of the Continent provide suitable, yet potentially challenging, conditions for a wide variety of plant life. Numerous species of plants within the park are at the edge of their geographic boundaries.

Seventy-two plant species found in Glacier National Park are listed as "sensitive" by the State of Montana with the majority of those species found in wetlands or alpine/subalpine areas. About 24 of those species are found nowhere else in Montana.

The Logan Pass area in Glacier National Park was designated as the first Important Plant Area in Montana in 2010. This area is home to popular flowers like glacier lilies and spring beauties, but the Important Plant Area also harbors more than 25 different rare plants and mosses in an area that covers less than three percent of the park. It is the only place in Montana to view glaucous gentian, running pine, Macoun’s draba, and several moss species.

Ongoing inventory and monitoring is critical to Glacier’s vegetation management. Crews work to collect baseline data as part of the inventory project then monitor those sites to note changes over time.