Sparing bursts of floral color unfold on Lake Superior’s rocky northern coast in summer. Lakeside cliffs and ledges present a harsh growing environment for plants. Fierce winds and wave spray pelt the rock; the lake’s cold waters delay the coming of spring; and soils are thin and often confined to crevices, mossy mounds, and grassy patches. Yet the coast hosts an impressive diversity of flowers. From towering headlands to low-lying ledges, its land forms provide varying conditions of exposure to wind, weather, and waves, and the assorted crevices, rock walls, and basins on their surfaces create micro-habitats for plants with differing soil, moisture, and shelter requirements.
Click on an image to scroll through the gallery and read the brief accompanying text. If interested in learning more about Lake Superior's coastal flowers, please see suggested