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Eastern Camas Camassia scilloides

Previously known as:

  • Camassia esculenta
  • Quamasia hyacinthina
Phonetic Spelling
kah-MASS-see-ah sil-OY-dees
Description

Wild Hyacinth is a perennial wildflower often found in moist meadows, stream banks, or open woods. It is best grown from bulbs planted in moist, fertile, acidic, humusy, well-drained soils and allowed to grow in full sun to part shade. Plants develop slowly but are usually long-lived. They do not form bulb offsets but reproduce by seed. These will take up to 3 years to flower.

Flowers consist of a terminal raceme of fragrant, pale blue, pink to white flowers that bloom sequentially from the bottom of the raceme to the top. Each raceme typically holds up to 20 flowers. Basal leaves turn yellow and wither after flowering and it is dormant by mid-summer.

Wild Hyacinth will reseed itself but it is easier grown from bulbs. Place the bulbs 4 to 6 inches deep and 6 inches apart in the fall in a site where they will remain undisturbed. Provide regular moisture during spring growth and bloom. After bloom, the plant will tolerate drier conditions as the plants head for summer dormancy. 

USDA lists this plant as threatened in North Carolina. 

Diseases, Insects, and Other Plant Problems:

No known diseases or other problems.

Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#bulb#showy flowers#perennial#low maintenance#moist soil#wildflower garden#food source nectar#food source pollen#Piedmont Mountains FAC#Coastal FACW#bird friendly
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#bulb#showy flowers#perennial#low maintenance#moist soil#wildflower garden#food source nectar#food source pollen#Piedmont Mountains FAC#Coastal FACW#bird friendly
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Camassia
    Species:
    scilloides
    Family:
    Asparagaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Perennial
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Seed
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Central and Eastern North America
    Wildlife Value:
    Attracts bees, flies, butterflies, and wasps seeking nectar from the flowers.
    Edibility:
    Bulbs are edible. Can be confused with Zygadenus nuttallii, or Death Camas, whose bulbs appear similar, but are known to be poisonous.
    Dimensions:
    Height: 1 ft. 0 in. - 3 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 1 ft. 0 in. - 2 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Wildflower
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Habit/Form:
    Clumping
    Erect
    Growth Rate:
    Medium
    Maintenance:
    Low
    Texture:
    Fine
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    Clay
    High Organic Matter
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Neutral (6.0-8.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Occasionally Dry
    Available Space To Plant:
    Less than 12 inches
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    4a, 4b, 5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Green
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Summer
    Fruit Type:
    Capsule
    Fruit Length:
    < 1 inch
    Fruit Width:
    < 1 inch
    Fruit Description:
    1/3 inch long and wide 3-celled seed capsule is green maturing to brown. Each capsule contains many small black and shiny seeds.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Blue
    Green
    White
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Raceme
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Fragrant
    Good Cut
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Flower Shape:
    Star
    Flower Petals:
    Bracts
    Flower Size:
    < 1 inch
    Flower Description:
    Flowering stalk rises up to 2 feet supporting 3/4-1 inch pale blue, pink or white flowers that bloom in April and May. Six-pointed, star-shaped flowers on an elongated, loose raceme with green bracts that flare out from under the flower. Stamens are bright yellow.
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Rosulate
    Leaf Shape:
    Linear
    Leaf Margin:
    Entire
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    > 6 inches
    Leaf Width:
    < 1 inch
    Leaf Description:
    Keeled, linear, grass-like leaves, 5 to 15 inches long and 1/3 inch wide, in a basal rosette. They are medium to dark green, margins entire and undersides have a prominent mid-rib.
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Green
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Surface:
    Smooth (glabrous)
    Stem Description:
    Slender, light to medium green, and glabrous central stem
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Meadow
    Small Space
    Woodland
    Landscape Theme:
    Butterfly Garden
    Children's Garden
    Cottage Garden
    Cutting Garden
    Native Garden
    Pollinator Garden
    Design Feature:
    Border
    Mass Planting
    Attracts:
    Bees
    Butterflies
    Pollinators
    Songbirds
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Black Walnut
    Drought