Technically, a wildflower is any flower that grows without being intentionally planted or seeded—including all of those dandelions plaguing the pristine beauty of your front lawn, and as opposed to all those plants that grow naturally within their indigenous environs. But, who knew that the term could be controversial? Scientists take issue with “wildflower” due to its inherent ambiguity, and instead prefer a more precise vocabulary, such as “native” vs. “invasive” species.
The organizers of this weekend’s Wasatch Wildflower Festival may not care about making such fine scientific distinctions, however. The festival originated when some Alta locals were looking for a reason to get together during the summer-flower season and throw a party. From those humble roots, the Wasatch Wildflower Festival has bloomed and is now a fruitful three-day collaboration between the non-profits of Alta Community Enrichment, The Cottonwood Canyons Foundation and The Snowbird Renaissance Center. The aim of all the natural fun is to highlight both the wildflower diversity and beauty of the surrounding mountains while spreading the word on how to keep all those native species of flowers happy and healthy, guarded from all those nasty invasive species.
Guided nature walks of both the short and longer, meandering variety are the backbone of the festival, and begin from each of the four ski resorts—Brighton, Solitude, Alta and Snowbird—that call the Cottonwoods home.
Wasatch Wildflower Festival @ Big and Little Cottonwood canyons, 801-947-8263, July 17-19. WasatchWildflowerFestival.com