Lupine Loveliness (Blank Photo Card)
Waterton Lakes National Park in Alberta, Canada is a very picturesque place. The lovely wild lupines (Lupinus sericeus) in the photo were growing in natural grassland there. Lupines got their name from the latin word “lupus” meaning wolf because it was thought they robbed the soil of nutrients (like a wolf would steal livestock). However, lupines are nitrogen fixers, so they add nitrogen to the soil, instead of taking nutrients from it. Though these plants can be poisonous, chipmunks have been known to eat the seed, and squirrels will eat the leaves and flowers. These wild lupines are also an important food source for an endangered butterfly in the park, the half-moon hairstreak.