Great Camas – Camassia leichtlinii

Asparagus Family – Asparagaceae

Actual flower size: 2 inches across

Actual flower size: 2 inches across


Great Camas is also called Leichtlin’s Camas.

Plant Description:  Great Camas is 3 to 4 feet-tall with erect, sturdy stems. There are several, 1 inch-wide grass-like, basal leaves reaching about halfway up the stem. At the top of the stem is a spike of blue flowers which open a few at a time, but do not open flat.

Flower Description: The flower is 2 inches across. The 6 pale blue, purple or white tepals are evenly spaced. There are 6 blue stamen with cream colored to violet pollen and a protruding green ovary with a slender style with 3 stigmas.

Ecology: Great Camas grows on both sides of the Cascades in meadows, prairies and hillsides where it is moist, at least in early spring.


  • Great Camas has been moved from the Lily Family to the Asparagus Family.  See “APG Changes” page.
  • The bulbs of the Great Camas were also harvested by the Native Americans.
  • After blooming the tepals of Great Camas twist as they dry, covering the seeds. The tepals of Common Camas do not twist.
  • Great Camas is not as common as Common Camas.

 Great Camas Photo Gallery