Wild Hyacinth Dichelostemma capitatum (Brodiaea pulchella)




Even prior to our past four drought years, the number or population of Wild Hyacinth has seemed much less than when I was a boy emulating stories of the local Yokuts by digging the bulb (corm) up to eat, an important source of starch for Native Americans. It is believed that the Wild Hyacinth was cultivated, the corms thinned and separated in the process of harvesting prior to, during and after their period of bloom.

This year, however, due to whatever circumstances and weather conditions, many hillsides and slopes exude a purple haze with their sheer number, more than I’ve ever seen in this area. It may be that the hoof action of our cattle during the dry years with short feed simulated cultivation and separation, and also aerated the ground for our early rains.


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