This section is from the book "An Illustrated Flora Of The Northern United States, Canada And The British Possessions Vol1", by Nathaniel Lord Britton, Addison Brown. Also available from Amazon: An Illustrated Flora of the Northern United States, Canada and the British Possessions. 3 Volume Set..
Glabrous, poisonous perennial herbs, with membranous-coated bulbs, narrowly linear conduplicate leaves and small perfect or polygamous flowers in racemes or panicles. Perianth wholly inferior, free from the ovary, its segments distinct, short-clawed, each bearing an obovate or semi-orbicular gland at or above the base. Stamens mostly adnate to the bases of the perianth-segments; anthers subreniform, confluently 1-celled. Ovary 3-celled. Capsule 3-beaked, 3-celled, containing numerous seeds.
Leaves 3"-8" wide; flowers mostly perfect.
Leaves 2"-3' wide; flowers polygamous.
Amianthiuin Nuttallii A. Gray, Ann. Lye. N. Y. 4: 123.
Light green, scarcely glaucous, stem 1°-2° high. Bulb large, coated; leaves 3"-8" wide, shorter than the stem, strongly conduplicate, the upper very short; inflorescence racemose or paniculate bracts membranous, scarious, shorter than the slender pedicels; flowers mostly perfect, about 6" broad; perianth-segments oval or ovate, obtuse, free from the ovary, thin, short-clawed, bearing a roundish spot-like gland; capsule 4"-6" long.
On prairies, Kansas, Colorado and Arkansas. May-June.
Zygadenus venenosus Rydb. Contr. Dept. Agric. 3: 525.
1896. Not S. Wats. Zygadenus gramineus Rydb. Bull. Torr. Club 27: 535.
1900. T. gramineum Rydb. Bull. Torr. Club 30: 272. 1903.
Pale green, stem slender, 6-2° tall, from a small coated bulb. Leaves conduplicate, roughish, 2"-3" wide, shorter than the stem, the upper small and distant; inflorescence a simple or somewhat branched raceme, 2'~4' long in flower, elongating in fruit, the slender pedicels longer than the scarious lanceolate bracts; flowers yellow or yellowish, polygamous, about 4" wide; perianth-segments ovate or elliptic, obtuse or acutish, short-clawed, free from the ovary, bearing a roundish gland with an irregular margin; fruiting pedicels erect; capsule longer than the perianth.
South Dakota to Saskatchewan, Idaho, Nebraska and Utah. Hog's-potato. Death-camass. Roots poisonous. May-June.