Camassia scilloides Cory
April to May N Family: Liliaceae
Flower: Light blue to white, six petaled flowers on inch long stalks surround the stem. The cluster can include as many as 80 flowers. Six stamens stick out from around the green ovary bulge in the center of the flower. The flowers at the bottom of the cluster open first followed by those further up as new buds form on the tip of the stem.
Leaf: The leaves are all basal and grass like. They are green, slightly darker on the under side, with parallel veins. The leaves have no hairs.
Stem: A single smooth green flower stalk with no leaves on it can reach two feet but is usually 12” to 18”.
Root: The perennial root is a bulb.
Habitat: This plant likes light shade and moist, rich soil. It favors ravines, edges of woods and roadside ditches.
Wild Hyacinth flower clusters are looser and the flower petals thinner than the garden varieties. They only come in light blue to white. The plants still put on a display.
The six petals are referred to as tepals. This is because three are petals. The other three are sepals. They look the same so the flower appears to have six petals.
The plants tend to grow in groups. They can line the roadside for twenty feet from the edge of the ditch to four feet up. Then there are none.
On the hillside in the edge of the woods Wild Hyacinth grows near seeps or where water flows after a rain. These plants do like it moist but not wet. They will grow in full sun but seem to prefer partial light shade.
Although the Indians ate the bulbs, the plant is similar to a poisonous calla. The bulbs are small and not really worth the effort even with positive identification.
Wild Hyacinth is one of the spring ephemerals. It blooms for only a month, sets seed and disappears.