In addition to the Glacier Lillies carpeting the forest floor these small Yellow Bells, which are also in the Lilly family, have kept us company this spring. The plants are only 10-30cm tall and usually contain a single flower. They grow scattered in patches both in open areas as shown below and in more forested areas as well.
The bulb of yellowbells is edible, raw or cooked. It can also be dried for later use. Since it is rich in starch, it is best used in the autumn, however, many tribes picked them in May and boiled them alone or with bitterroot. The raw bulb tastes like potatoes, when cooked it tastes like rice. It can be eaten as a vegetable or be added to soups etc. Several tribes used them for food. The green seedpods can be eaten, boiled as a wild green, but are said to be bitter.
We found flowers that ranged from the typical yellow to some that were a deep orange.