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Lubera stops plant deliveries to the UK
Due to Brexit, we are not able to deliver to the UK. We are working on a solution on how we can continue to bring a wide range of Lubera plants to the UK and directly to our customers' homes in the future. However, such a solution will not be available before 2022 or 2023.

Camassia - Camas Lily

Prärielilien Lubera

In this country, they are still little known, but this should change! Camas lilies are stately eye-catchers in any spring garden.

   
 
Camas Lily 'Alba'

Camassia leichtlinii 'Alba'

£4.40 *

Camas Lily 'Blue Heaven'®

Camassia 'Blue Heaven'®

£6.40 *

Camas Lily 'Caerulea'

Camassia leichtlinii 'Caerulea'

£4.90 *

   
 

More useful information about Camassia - Camas Lily

With a height of 60 to 100 centimetres, these plants conjure up a wild romance in the garden with their blue flowers and they even look good from a distance. These flower bulbs particularly like to grow in damp meadows or in not too dry perennial flower beds. Depending on the variety they bloom from early April to late May. The classic Camassia caerulea has a bright blue-purple colour, much like blue hyacinths, with whom they are botanically related. There are also white camas lilies.

These gorgeous flowers bloom according to variety from the beginning of April to the end of May. The most famous camas lily for the garden is Camassia leichtlinii 'Caerulea'. This plant is quite tall with a height of up to 130 cm. However, it only reaches this height when the flower bulbs grow on moist, very nutrient-rich and humus-rich soils. Usually, this plant reaches about 80 to 100 cm high. This makes it deal in a display at the back of larger perennial beds.

The ideal location

Prärielilien LuberaThese beautiful blue plants thrive in places where other bulbous flowers are more likely to have trouble. This is because they like it sunny, however they need enough water. Thus they prefer to grow in rather wet meadows. Even as stately eye-catchers on the edge of a garden pond, they grow well and hardly need any care if they are happy where they are planted. These flower bulbs like the water and they will readily produce seeds thanks to the moisture. Together with other moisture-loving plants on the edge of the pond, camas lilies provide a particularly harmonious picture. At their natural location in the North American prairie, they emerge from the wet meadows and their long flower stalks loll in the sea of ​​grass. They are used to full sun and can tolerate a lot of wind in a meadow. In the garden, these plants can also cope in a partially shaded site in humus-rich, loose soil. Ideally, the bed should be dug up well before planting and enriched with mature compost. In a larger perennial bed, these flower bulbs also look magnificent; planted in groups, their effect from a distance is also very impressive. If the bed is not so moist, they simply need to be watered regularly in dry weather, and then they can be successfully grown in virtually any sunny to partially shaded location. If they like the location, they behave similar to daffodils and will come back reliably every year. In an ideal location with moist, nutrient-rich soil, these plants need little care. They like to grow and naturalise themselves; over time they will form a romantic blue sea of ​​flowers in a wet meadow.

Good partners in a perennial flower bed

There are different types and varieties of camassia flower bulbs. Most popular are the blue species, especially Camassia leichtlinii. They can be displayed well in a perennial bed, for example, they look great combined with large ferns. They are particularly beautiful in groups between other perennials and also in combination with other spring-blooming shrubs, for example with peonies. Their blue flowers and their long narrow leaves are a nice contrast to shrubs, and they can also be perfectly combined with ferns, which thrive with their lush leaves in the same soil. Often you can see them in larger hydrangea beds, where their long flower stalks flourish, in addition to the flower balls of the hydrangeas. But even in a sunny perennial flower bed, these flower bulbs look good. They must then be watered regularly if it is rather dry there. Incidentally, the long slender flower stems of the camas lilies look particularly beautiful in combination with the flower balls of ornamental onions (Allium).

When should they be planted?

They should be planted from the end of August until the autumn. They are best displayed in groups of five to nine. The bulbs are up to fist-sized and should not be planted too close together. The ideal planting distance is 20 to 30 centimetres. For each bulb, a separate hole of about 20 centimetres deep should be dug. On the bottom of the planting hole, you should mix in a handful of sand. Then put the bulbs with the shoot tip facing up on this sand bed. Fill with soil and compost and press well.

Care and winter protection

Camas lilies are basically hardy. Their leaves go back into the ground before winter, so the bulb can gather strength. Camas lilies appreciate being covered with some leaves and brushwood before the winter. And they like to have a handful of well-rotted compost as food before the winter for additional protection. Otherwise, they are very easy to care for. Watch out for mice though, like all edible bulbs; the mice of course also know that they can nibble on these lovely bulbs. The leaves are hardly infested by pests. After flowering, the seeds form and they re-seed; this is how larger colonies usually form over the years. Theoretically, you could also use the seeds yourself, but it could take several years for the bulbs to flower. Therefore, it is better to start with bought bulbs at the beginning.

Camassia bulbs are edible

The flower bulbs of these interesting camas lilies are edible, however, the leaves and seeds are not recommended for consumption. When harvesting, it is important that they are not confused with the similar-looking, but dangerous American 'Death Camas'. This bulb is a highly poisonous plant known as Toxicoscordion venenosum. The bulbs of this notorious plant look almost identical to camas lily bulbs, and they can only be distinguished when they flower. In the garden, this is not a danger, since only the non-toxic Camassia are planted.

The vegetable of the native American Indians

The classic edible camas lilies are not the large Camassia leichtlinii, but the slightly smaller, wild quamash (Camassia esculenta), which are traditionally popular with the North American Indians as a food plant, and which also have blue flowers. The camas lilies are still appreciated by them to this day as a food source. In the general population, this nutritious plant has been forgotten. Digging up the camas lilies can be a bit tricky because the juicy bulb is easily broken. And the preparation is not easy either. The bulbs are first skinned and then slowly steamed for 24 to 30 hours at the lowest possible temperatures in a steamer, or alternatively, they can be roasted slowly over the embers of a fire. The Indians cook their camas lilies for a full day and night over a fire. Only then do they take on the brownish caramel colour and get a very sweet taste. In the past, they were even used to sweeten other foods.

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