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Description of Botanical Gardens

Mountain LilyA four and one-half acre garden spans most of the grassy landscape at Savoy. The colorful garden is along a twelve-hundred foot walking path meandering through eleven featured planting areas that are comprised of more than 1,200 plants. The path is lined with resting benches, interpretive signs, and an octagonal interpretive kiosk with eight story boards explaining the several hundred different native species found in the garden.

Many of the species were transplanted from the forest. Other species were obtained from a number of regional nurseries specializing in native vegetation who supply local mining companies with their reclamation planting needs.

The purpose of the botanical gardens is to encourage the anticipated two-hundred thousand annual visitors to use native vegetation at their home and business landscapes to conserve drinking water, reduce the use of chemicals, and enhance wildlife habitat. Native vegetation is accustomed to normal precipitation requiring much less irrigation, and is weed tolerant to infestation.

One of the eleven special planting areas is the 'Berry Patch.' The Patch contains twenty-one species of native berries including Bearberry, Bunchberry, Wild Strawberry, Snowberry, Mountain Huckleberry, Grouseberry, Gooseberry, Chokecherry, Buffaloberry, Serviceberry, Elderberry, Thimbleberry, Holly Grape, and Cranberry Highbush.

Other planting areas feature Sunny Wildflower, Shaded Wildflower, Ornamental Grasses, Aspen/Birch Grove, Sunny Stream, Shaded Stream, Rocky Cliff, Noxious Weeds, Shrubs/Forbs, and Hardwood Trees/Shrubs.

The $65,000 gardens project was funded with a $14,500 grant from the Andrea and Norman Waitt Jr. Foundation, $22,000 from the Foundation including donations from the "Friends of Spearfish Canyon" members, and $25,000 from voluntary services. Volunteers include ten members from the national NCCC-AmeriCorp project, Wyss Landscape Architects of Rapid City, and fourteen members of the garden advisory panel.

Complete Native Botanical List

Numbers indicated next to species are page reference to the following field guide:

Plants of the Black Hills and Bear Lodge Mountains
Gary E. Larson and James R. Johnson
1999, South Dakota State University, Brookings, South Dakota

Forest Shaded Wildflowers

Various Asters

Aster spp (64)

Pasque Flower

Anemone patens (314)

Bee Balm

Monarda fistulosa (246)

Arrowleaf Balsamroot

Balsamorhiza sagittata (90)

Small Leaf Pussytoes

Antennaria parvifolia (74)

Pearly Everlasting

Anaphalis margaritacea (70)

Smooth Beard Tongue

Penstemon glaber (352)

Shell-leaf Penstemon

Penstemon grandiflorus (354)

Mountain Meadowsweet

Spiraea betulifolia (552)


Campanula rotundifolia (180)

Heartleaf Arnica

Arnica cordifolia (74)

Slender Penstemon

Pensteman gracilis (352)

Aspen/Birch Grove

Quaking Aspen

Populus tremuloides (556)

Paper Birch

Betula papyrifera (490)


Rubus parviflorus (548)

Buffalo Currant

Ribes odoratum (518))


Thalictrum dasycarpum (322)

Sunny Stream

Iron Wood

Ostrya virginiana (494)

White Spruce

Picea glauca (524)

Shrubby Ciniquefoil

Potentilla fruticosa (538)


Amelanchier alnifolila (532)


Crataegus succulenta (536)

Red Raspberry

Rubus idaeus (548)


Prunus virginiana (542)


Symphoricarpos occidentalis(498)


Viburnum lentago (500)

Low Serviceberry

Amelanchier humilis (534)

Northwest Ciniquefoil

Potentilla gracilis (532)

Lanceleaf Bluebell

Mertensia lanceolata (158)

Viscid Cranesbill

Geranium viscosissimum (238)

Blue-eyed Grass

Sisyrinchium montanum (240)

Nodding Onion

Allium cernuum (254)

Wild Strawberry

Fragaria virginiana (326)

Hearleaf Alexanders

Zizia aptera (56)

Cutleaf Alexanders

Rudbekia laciniata (134)

Western Blue Flag

Iris missouriensis (240)

Smooth Scouring Rush

Equisetum laevigatum (42)


Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (510)

Wild Plum

Prunus Americana (540)

Shaded Stream

Box Elder

Acer Negundo (480)


Salix spp. (558)

River Birch

Betula occidentalis (490)


Sambucus racemosa (496)

Red Osier Dogwood

Cornus Stolonifera (504)

Wild Plum

Prunus Americana (540)


Myosotis scorpioides (158)

Riverbank Wild Grape

Vitis riparia (574)

Meadow Anemone

Anemone canadensis (312)

Joe-pye Weed

Eupatorium maculatum (110)

Bracted Spiderwort

Tradescantia bracteata (190)


Cornus candensis (192)

Retrosa Sedge

Carex rostrata (466)

Reed Manna Grass

Glyceria grandis (412)

Canada Wildrye

Elymus canadensis (402)

Downy Phlox

Phlox pilosa (294)

Birdsfoot Violet

Viola pedatifida (372)


Arctostaphylos Uva-ursi (510)

Nebraska Sedge

Carex nebrascensis (458)

Prairie Cordgrass

Spartina pectinata (436)

Ornamental Tall Grasses

Mountain Timothy

Phleum alpinum (424)


Danthonia intermedia (400)


Deschampsia caespitosa (400)


Sorghastrum nutans (434)


Andropogon scorparius (434)


Andropogon gerardii (382)

Porcupine Grass

Stipa spartea (442)

Switch Grass

Panicum virgatum (420)

Western Wheat Grass

Agropyron smithii (422)

Green Needle Grass

Stipa Viridula (444)

Rocky Cliff

Ponderosa Pine

Pinus ponderosa (528)

Rocky Mountain Cedar

Juniperus scopulorum (506)

Creeping Juniper

Juniperus horizontalis (506)

Common Juniper

Juniperus communis (504)

Wild Rose

Rosa arkansana (546)

Shrubby Ciniquefoil

Potentilla fruticosa (538)

Western Red Current

Ribes cereum (520)

Wormleaf Stonecrop

Sedum lanceolatum (194)

Leafy Phlox

Phlox alyssifolia (296)

Prairie Chickweed

Cirastium arvense (184)

Rose Pussytoes

Antennaria microphylla (72)

Blue Grama

Bouteloua gracilis (386)

Bottlebrush Squirreltail

Sitanion hystrix (404)

June Grass

Koeleria macrantha (414)

Hairy Grama

Bouteloua hirsuta (386)

Noxious Weeds


Tanacetum vulgare (146)

Hounds Tongue

Cynoglossum officinale (154)

Common St. Johnswort

Hypericum perforatum (188)


Linaria vulgaris (346)

Canada Thistle

Cirsium arvense (96


Verbascum thapsus (356)


Arctium minus

Sunny Wildflowers

Wild Geranium

Geranium spp (238)

Shooting Star

Dodecatheon pulchellum (306)

Wild Strawberry

Fragaria vesca (326)

Cutleaf Fleabane

Erigeron compositus (106)

Trailing Fleabane

Erigeron flagellaris (104)

Hoary Fleabane

Erigeron canus (104)

Stemless Hymenoxys

Hymenoxys acaulis (122)

Purple Coneflower

Echinacea angustifolia (102)

Tufted Evening Primrose

Oenothera caespitosa (278)

Prairie Smoke

Geum triflorum (326)

Dotted Gayfeather

Liatris punctata (126)

Maximilian Sunflower

Helianthus maximiliani (116)

Stiff Goldrod

Solidago rigida (144)

Aromatic Aster

Aster oblongifolius (88)

Hairy Goldaster

Chrysopsis villosa (94)

Purple Prairie Clover

Dalea purpurea (214)

Shell-leaf Penstemon

Penstemon grandiflorus (354)

Silvery Lupine

Lupinus argenteus (218)

White Crazyweed

Oxytropis sericea (224)

White Beardtongue

Penstemon albidus (350)



Rhus trilobata (482)

Smooth Sumac

Rhus glabra (482)


Yucca glauca (44)


Shepherdia canadensis (510)

Mount Mahogany

Cercocarpus montanus (534)


Amorpha canescens (514)

Northern Gooseberry

Ribes oxyacanthoides (522)


Prickly Pear

Opuntia fragilis (178)


Gallardia aristata (112)

Blackeyed Susan

Rudbeckia hirta (132)

White Sage

Artemisia ludoviciana (82)

Fringed Sage

Artemisia frigida (80)

Wooly Verbena

Verbena stricta (366)

Yellow Prairie Coneflower

Ratibida Columnifera (132)


Thermopsis rhombifolia (228)

Lawn Grasses

Blue Grama

Bouteloua gracilis (386)

Sideoats Grama

Bouteloua curtipendula (384)


Buchloe dactyloides (392)

Hardwood Trees and Shrubs

Bur Oak

Quercus macrocarpa (516)

Green Ash

Fraxinus pennsylvanica (524)

Balsam Popular

Populus balsamifera (554)

Gamble Oak

Quercus gambelii (516)

Highbush Cranberry

Viburnum opulus (500)


Sambucus canadensis (496)


Prunus virginiana (542)

Wild Plum

Purnus americana (540)


Erigeron speciosus

Berry Patch

Grouse Berry

Vaccinium scoparium (512)


Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (510)


Cornus canadensis (192)


Shepherdia argentea (508)


Symphoricarpos occidentalis (498)

Wolfberry Chokecherry

Sympharicarpos albus (498)

Elderberry - Red

Sambucus canadensis

Elderberry - Stinking

Sambucus racemosa (496)

Oregon Grape Holly

Mahonia repens (488)

Highbush Craneberry

Viburnum opulus (500)


Amelanchier alnifolia (532)

Wild Strawberry

Fragaria virginiana (326)


Rubus pubescens (550)

Red Raspberry

Rubus idaeus (548)


Ribes missouriense (517)


Rubus parviflorus (548)

Golden Current

Ribes aureum (518)

American Plum

Prunus americana (540)


Juniperus horizontalis (506)

Box Elder

Acer negundo (480)