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Camas, cute spring wildflowers


Camas are beautiful bulb flowers that bloom in spring and their nice blossoms are white or blue.

Key Camas facts

Family – Liliaceae (lily family)
Type – spring bulb

Height – 20 to 28 inches (50 to 70 cm)

Exposure: full sun, part sun  –  Soil: ordinary  –  Outdoor blooming: spring, early summer

In pots or in the ground, they are great when combined with other colors, too.

Planting camas

Camas is usually planted in the ground, but it will still grow well in shallow pots if watered often.

Planting Camas in the ground for spring

  • Camas plantingIt is best to plant your camas in fall, 4 inches (10 cm) deep, and they will bloom in spring.
  • Plant camas bulbs about 4 inches (10 cm) deep.
  • Your camas will be much more beautiful if you grow them to form clustered spots of color.
    For that, you should plant bulbs in groups, spacing them 4 to 6 inches (10 to 15 cm) apart.
    The more, the merrier!
  • Camas like sun but must be protected from scorching. Favor part sun instead.
  • Check our advice on planting bulbs in the ground.
  • Here are also our tips to plant bulbs in clay and waterlogged soil.

Caring for camasCaring for Camas

Camas that are planted in fall will bloom in spring. This is the normal, natural blooming cycle.

  • Cut floral scapes off when they are wilted, but keep the leaves untouched.
  • When blooming is over, cut leaves back only when they have already turned yellow, and only then.

The span of time between blooming and wilting leaves is when the bulb is stocking up on nutrients for the next blooming cycle.

Learn more about camas

Camassia varieties and speciesCamas come in different colors depending on the variety.

  • The most well-known are Camassia fraseri which have nice white flowers.
  • Blue flowers are for Camassia esculenta, cusickiiCamassia quamash and Camassia leichtlinii.

Native to the United States and Canada, in the Western States, they are often nicest in the wild, transforming pastures into magnificent meadows when spring comes.

Camas origin and landscapingThey’re part of the Liliaceae family, hence the common name “camas lily”.

Camas was used as a food source by the American Indians, who collected the bulbs to grill, steam or bake them over several days. Flour made from the cooked roots makes for excellent pancakes because it contains lots of fructose sugar.

Read also on the topic of bulb flowers:

Smart tip about camas

Camas blooms year after year without any need for care.

Our tip: just forget about them, and sit back and savor their bloom every year.

Images: CC BY-SA 2.0: F. D. Richards; dreamstime: Olesia Sarycheva, Ivashkova; Pixabay: cfarnsworth, Greg Seed
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