Aug. 16, 2017

small camas, Camassia quamash

The bulbs of this beautiful plant were a staple food for Indians of the northwest. Great meadows of them grew on river plains. Camas helped feed the Lewis and Clark Expedition. Agricultural practices brought by European settlement greatly reduced the populations. The economic and cultural impacts helped start two wars with the Bannock and Nez Perce. Camas persists in CA, ID, MY, NV, OR, UT, WA, WY, AB, and BC. Beal Gardens, MSU, 5/27/16.