Explore our gardens

What’s in Bloom

Check the Park’s Welcome and Information board by the Core Trail entrance for more information about what is currently blooming in the Park.
The Seasons are changing in the YRBP! Look for the fruits of plants. In Sascha’s Garden the Mahonia Repens, Creeping Oregon Grape has put out its berries. The Oregon Grape is a scrub with holly like leaves. The “grapes” are edible but are seedy and tart!
In the fall the Lily of the Valley puts out this orange berry BUT these are highly poisonous and are not edible!
The Crabapple trees found throughout the Park are loaded with fruit! If you have Dolgo Crabapple trees, picking the fruit now will prevent your trees from being damaged by foraging beers.
The bees are busy buzzing around the Sedum Autumn Joy.
Fall has arrived to the Park. Come by, find a quiet bench and watch the colors change!
Make a trip out to the Park and look for the Sphinx Moths! They are all over the Park and hover over the blooms like a hummingbird!
(Photo by: Jeff Morehead)


A female broad-tailed hummingbird sits on her nest nestled in the canopy of the pine trees.
The Osprey nest on the Core Trail is home to Steamboat’s Osprey Family. Four chicks hatched this year. You can still spot some along the river. Visit and bring your binoculars.
Moose and calf visit across the Yampa River.
Baby Broad-tailed hummingbird in the nest!
Hummingbird feeding from the honeysuckle in the Hummingbird Garden.
What do pollinators do for us? According to the USDA, scientists estimate one out of every three bites of food we eat exists because of pollinators like bees, butterflies, birds, bats, beetles and other insects

A pair of Sharp-tailed Grouse visited the Park today! The Grouse are year-round residents in upper northern regions like Alaska and Cananda but according to Bob Enever, the Park’s founder, Northwest Colorado has an outlier population of the Columbian sub-species in Routt and Moffat Counties. The Grouse eat grasses, seeds, and fruit. Young birds eat insects for protein. Bob explains in his book: “Birds of Steamboat Springs & Northwest Colorado” that prior to breading, both sexes gather on grounds called ‘leks’ where the males perform elaborate displays and the females pick mates.
Don’t miss the mink in the Park who have been keeping the Garter Snake population at bay.
Although primarily nocturnal, this beaver has been spotted swimming in the Park’s middle pond.

Don’t Miss!

This the fifth year that “Our” Ospreys have occupied the platform nest on the Yampa River at the Yampa River Botanic Park, so they are now experienced parents. They returned early, on April 1, he first and she one day later, after 9 months apart fishing the waters of South America.

From their actions we believe she laid eggs earlier than in recent years, and they were lucky with the weather; no mid-May snow and ice-storm that cooled the eggs a couple of years ago, resulting in no chicks. Their actions of standing together and looking down into the nest signaled that at least one chick had hatched early, but after five years of adding to the height of the nest, we could not see all of the chicks until a few days ago.

Now it can be told; there are 4 seemingly healthy chicks! The male has had to bring fish for the female from the day she started sitting on eggs and now he has to feed five hungry mouths until the last chick migrates in late August. If the fish supply diminishes for any reason; a fish die-off due to low water in the Yampa, competition from a nearby Osprey nest, sickness or injury of the male, there may not be enough food and not all the chicks will survive. If the female leaves the nest, the chicks would be easy prey for a passing Bald Eagle so she almost never leaves the nest unguarded, so she would face a problem if there were a shortage of fish.

Swallow nesting box at the Park

Did you know tree swallows can eat their body weight in mosquitoes everyday? The Park has 10 nesting boxes sized just for swallows using U.S. Fish and Wildlife design guidelines.  According to Park Founder Bob Enever in his book: “Birds of Steamboat Springs & Northwest Colorado,” swallows migrate in large flocks and breed abundantly in Routt County. They nest in existing tree cavities at up to 10,000 feet but they adapt well to nesting boxes like the ones at the Park.

Come out and watch the swallows swooping around the Park as they busily feed and fledge their young.  Stop by the Trillium House and pick up one of Bob’s books for a suggested donation of $30 which goes directly back into the running of the Park!