Definition of camas in English:

Share this entry

camas

Pronunciation: /kəˈmas/
(also camass or quamash)

noun

A North American plant of the lily family, cultivated for its starry blue or purple flowers.
  • Genera Camassia and Zigadenus, family Liliaceae: several species.
Example sentences
  • More commonly known as a spring bulb with a vibrant blue flower, quamash is native to Canada and the western United States, and its edible bulb was once a mainstay of native diets.
  • The most significant of the edibles, camas was eaten during the first of many friendly encounters with the Nez Perce along Idaho's Clearwater River.
  • The wetter areas support meadows containing Missouri goldenrod, false toadflax, golden-glow, Indian paintbrush, Mariposa lily, death camas, and prairie smoke.

Origin

Mid 19th century: from Chinook Jargon kamass, perhaps from Nootka.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: camas

Share this entry
 

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.