Grass grows above sagebrush
Sagebrush-steppe occurs in the northern range in Yellowstone.



This vegetation type occurs in the northern range, Hayden and Pelican valleys, and Gardner’s Hole. Mountain big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata var. vaseyana) dominates, along with several other kinds of sagebrush. Several grass species, such as Idaho fescue (Festuca idahoensis), also dominate sagebrush-steppe. Other species of the sagebrush steppe include mountain brome, needlegrasses, yampah, sticky geranium, and several species of upland sedges. The northern range can be spectacular with wildflowers in late June and early July.

In 2015, a long-term sagebrush steppe monitoring program was initiated to track the changes in plant cover and species composition over many years with an emphasis on invasive species. Data loggers will be used to assist staff with correlating any changes in the vegetation with climate change.

Whitebark pine growing on the summit of Mount Washburn.


Yellowstone's plants include species typical of the Rocky Mountains, the Great Plains, and the Intermountain region.

Alpine scene showing trees, grasses, and distant mountains.

Vegetation & Resources Management Branch

Park employees who inventory, monitor, manage, and research the vast array of plant communities in the park.

Last updated: August 21, 2017

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PO Box 168
Yellowstone National Park, WY 82190-0168



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