Page authors: Don Knoke, David Giblin
Camassia quamash
common camas

Distribution: Widely distributed on both sides of the Cascades crest in Washington; British Columbia to California, east to Montana and Utah.

Habitat: Open, moist areas, often where dry by late spring, from lowlands to mid-elevations in the mountains.

Flowers: April-June

Origin: Native

Growth Duration: Perennial

Conservation Status: Not of concern

Pollination: Bees, flies, butterflies, beetles, wasps


Scapose perennial from a deep-seated bulb, the scape 2-7 dm. tall.


Leaves several, all basal, 8-20 mm. broad, considerably shorter than the scape.


Inflorescence a raceme, many-flowered, 5-30 cm. long; pedicels 10-20 mm. long, spreading, arched or ascending in flower, incurved-erect in fruit; flowers pale to deep blue or violet, somewhat irregular; tepals 6, distinct, 15-35 mm. long and 2-8 mm. broad, narrowed at base, lowest segment curved outward and downward away from the others, all withering separately and exposing the ovary; stamens 6, anthers yellow or blue, style slender, stigmas 3.


Capsule ovoid, 3-celled, 1-2.5 cm. long.

Accepted Name:
Camassia quamash (Pursh) Greene
Publication: Man. Bot. San Francisco. 313. 1894.

Synonyms & Misapplications:
(none provided)
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria: Specimen records of Camassia quamash in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database

WA Flora Checklist: Camassia quamash checklist entry

OregonFlora: Camassia quamash information

E-Flora BC: Camassia quamash atlas page

CalPhotos: Camassia quamash photos

142 photographs:
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