[Cluster Lilies: The Genus Triteleia East of the Cascade Mountains of Oregon and Washington]

Blue Dicks, Douglas' Brodiaea, Large-flowered Triteleia

Triteleia grandiflora

Synonyms: Brodiaea douglasii, Brodiaea douglasii var. douglasii, Triteleia grandiflora ssp. grandiflora, Triteleia grandiflora var. grandiflora

Flower of Blue Dicks, Douglas' Brodiaea, Large-flowered Triteleia: Triteleia grandiflora (Synonyms: Brodiaea douglasii, Brodiaea douglasii var. douglasii, Triteleia grandiflora ssp. grandiflora, Triteleia grandiflora var. grandiflora)

The photo above shows a close-up of the flower of Douglas' Brodiaea as seen from the Horse Heaven Hills southwest of Benton City, WA....April 29, 2006. Note the inner trio of tepals which are distinctly ruffled and flared at a level about 2-3 mm higher than the outer trio of tepals.

Blue Dicks, Douglas' Brodiaea, Large-flowered Triteleia: Triteleia grandiflora (Synonyms: Brodiaea douglasii, Brodiaea douglasii var. douglasii, Triteleia grandiflora ssp. grandiflora, Triteleia grandiflora var. grandiflora) Photo at right of Douglas' Brodiaea from the Rattlesnake Hills northeast of Toppenish, WA.........5/10/97.
Characteristics:

Like bicolor cluster lily, Douglas' Brodiaea is a pretty prairie wildflower with a single stem arising from 20-70 cm in height from a deep seated, scaly corm. A pair of linear, grass-like leaves arise from the base of the plant. The leaves are flat but keeled beneath, ranging from 25-50 cm long and from 3-10 mm wide.

The inflorescence is a compact ro moderately loose umbel, the pedicels ranging from 1-5 cm long. The flowers consist of six fused tepals, forming a slightly flaring tube about 9 to 12 mm long. The tips of the tepals are free. The tube and tepals range from light to deep blue, with a deeper bluish-purple midvein.

The inner trio of tepals are broader than the outer trio, and the inner tepals are noticeably wavy-margined, the ruffling of the margin at least partly blocking the entrance to the tube (Note photo below.).

Douglas' Brodiaea is very similar in appearance to bicolor cluster lily. The latter plant may be identified due to the tighter inflorescence, lighter flowers (especially in the Columbia River Gorge and inland), and the lack of significant ruffling along the margins of the inner tepals.

Cluster lilies are suitable additions for prairie gardens but should only be purchased from reputable dealers of native plants. they should not be dug from wild locations.


Habitat:

Grasslands, sagebrush desert, and ponderosa pine forests.


Range:

Douglas' Brodiaea is found wholly east of the Cascade Mountains, from south-central British Columbia through central and eastern Washington, south-eastern Oregon, and estward western Montana, Wyoming, and northern Utah.


Inflorescence of Blue Dicks, Douglas' Brodiaea, Large-flowered Triteleia: Triteleia grandiflora (Synonyms: Brodiaea douglasii, Brodiaea douglasii var. douglasii, Triteleia grandiflora ssp. grandiflora, Triteleia grandiflora var. grandiflora) - Inflorescence of Blue Dicks, Douglas' Brodiaea, Large-flowered Triteleia: Triteleia grandiflora (Synonyms: Brodiaea douglasii, Brodiaea douglasii var. douglasii, Triteleia grandiflora ssp. grandiflora, Triteleia grandiflora var. grandiflora)

Inflorrescence of Blue Dicks, Douglas' Brodiaea, Large-flowered Triteleia: Triteleia grandiflora (Synonyms: Brodiaea douglasii, Brodiaea douglasii var. douglasii, Triteleia grandiflora ssp. grandiflora, Triteleia grandiflora var. grandiflora)

Douglas' brodiaea as seen on the west bank of the John Day River about one and one-half miles downstream from the Cottonwood Canyon State Park Campground.........April 6, 2015.

Sideview of the flowers of Blue Dicks, Douglas' Brodiaea, Large-flowered Triteleia: Triteleia grandiflora (Synonyms: Brodiaea douglasii, Brodiaea douglasii var. douglasii, Triteleia grandiflora ssp. grandiflora, Triteleia grandiflora var. grandiflora) - Blue Dicks, Douglas' Brodiaea, Large-flowered Triteleia: Triteleia grandiflora (Synonyms: Brodiaea douglasii, Brodiaea douglasii var. douglasii, Triteleia grandiflora ssp. grandiflora, Triteleia grandiflora var. grandiflora)

The photo at left shows a close-up sideview of the flowers of Douglas' Brodiaea as seen from the Horse Heaven Hills southwest of Benton City, WA.......April 29, 2006. The photo at right shows a view down onto the tepals of Douglas' brodiaea as seen in uplands around the North Fork Crooked River about one and one-quarter mile south of the junction of FS Roads #42 and #4215, Ochoco National Forest..........June 12, 2015. .

Flower of Blue Dicks, Douglas' Brodiaea, Large-flowered Triteleia: Triteleia grandiflora (Synonyms: Brodiaea douglasii, Brodiaea douglasii var. douglasii, Triteleia grandiflora ssp. grandiflora, Triteleia grandiflora var. grandiflora) - Blue Dicks, Douglas' Brodiaea, Large-flowered Triteleia: Triteleia grandiflora (Synonyms: Brodiaea douglasii, Brodiaea douglasii var. douglasii, Triteleia grandiflora ssp. grandiflora, Triteleia grandiflora var. grandiflora)

Close-up of the flower of Douglas' Brodiaea as seen at left from the summit of OR 74 between Hinton Creek and Little Butter Creek.........May 5, 2000. The photo at right shows a flower of Douglas brodiaea as seen on slopes above the west bank of the John Day River about 2 miles upstream from the Cottonwood Canyon State Park campground..........May 3, 2017.

Flower of Blue Dicks, Douglas' Brodiaea, Large-flowered Triteleia: Triteleia grandiflora (Synonyms: Brodiaea douglasii, Brodiaea douglasii var. douglasii, Triteleia grandiflora ssp. grandiflora, Triteleia grandiflora var. grandiflora) - Sideview of the flower of Blue Dicks, Douglas' Brodiaea, Large-flowered Triteleia: Triteleia grandiflora (Synonyms: Brodiaea douglasii, Brodiaea douglasii var. douglasii, Triteleia grandiflora ssp. grandiflora, Triteleia grandiflora var. grandiflora) - Blue Dicks, Douglas' Brodiaea, Large-flowered Triteleia: Triteleia grandiflora (Synonyms: Brodiaea douglasii, Brodiaea douglasii var. douglasii, Triteleia grandiflora ssp. grandiflora, Triteleia grandiflora var. grandiflora)

The photo above shows several close-up views of the flowers of Douglas' brodiaea as seen along the Umatilla Rim Trail on the northeastern side of the North Fork Umatilla Wilderness........June 24, 2007.

Blue Dicks, Douglas' Brodiaea, Large-flowered Triteleia: Triteleia grandiflora (Synonyms: Brodiaea douglasii, Brodiaea douglasii var. douglasii, Triteleia grandiflora ssp. grandiflora, Triteleia grandiflora var. grandiflora)

Douglas' brodiaea in bloom along the first mile of the North Fork Catherine Creek Trail #1905, Wallowa-Whitman National Forest.......June 12, 2018.

Inflorescence of Blue Dicks, Douglas' Brodiaea, Large-flowered Triteleia: Triteleia grandiflora (Synonyms: Brodiaea douglasii, Brodiaea douglasii var. douglasii, Triteleia grandiflora ssp. grandiflora, Triteleia grandiflora var. grandiflora)

The photo above shows a close-up of the inflorescence of Douglas' brodiea as seen along the old Vantage Highway on the eastbank of the Columbia River........April 30, 2007.

Paul Slichter