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Botany

The 8.4 million acres of public land managed by the Bureau of Land Management in Colorado cover a wide variety of topographic, climatic, geologic and watershed conditions that lead to a high diversity of plant life on those lands. Plant communities range from dry saltbush and sagebrush communities to spruce-fir and alpine plant communities. BLM manages riparian communities across the elevational gradient. BLM Colorado's Botany program is multifaceted to reflect the plant diversity in the lands we manage, but can be grouped into three main categories to reflect Bureau priorities: managing healthy native plant communities, managing special status plant species, and managing non-native invasive plant species.

Healthy Native Plant Communities

Promoting healthy native plant communities is reflected in our participation in the Native Plant Conservation Initiative and Celebrating Wildflowers (linked below). Each year the BLM partners with the Denver Botanic Garden and the US Forest Service for a kickoff to Celebrating Wildflowers during the third week of May. Together, we distribute a coloring book featuring a Colorado Native Plant Community with native wildflower drawings and facts. To date, two Coloring Books have been produced in PDF format.  These feature Wildflowers of Ponderosa Pine Forests and Wildflowers of the Colorado Mountain Tops. A wildflower poster is also available in PDF format.


Contact the wildflower hotline at 1-800-354-4595 for information on wildflower viewing and events around the country.

Special Status Plant Species

Public lands in Colorado are managed for Endangered, Threatened and Candidate Plant Species. Eight of the 13 plant species in Colorado that are protected by the Endangered Species Act are found on BLM lands. In addition to managing for listed plant species, BLM policy allows the State Director to designate Sensitive Species for those rare species that are found on BLM lands, and BLM management actions may affect the species. In May of 2000 BLM Colorado updated its Sensitive Species List . According to BLM policy, sensitive species are considered in management actions to ensure that our actions do not cause these species to need to be listed in the future. More information on all these special status plant species can be found in the Colorado Rare Plant Field Guide linked below.

Non Native Invasive Plants

Non Native Invasive Plant Species include those listed by the State of Colorado Department of Agriculture as Noxious Weeds (linked below) and other species that are not formally listed as noxious, but are very aggressive and tend to displace native plants in wildland situations. A web page featuring BLM Colorado's Weed program is under construction and will be available soon.

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Important Links (Within BLM Colorado):