Arizona Naturalists >>> Sycamore Gallery Flora >>> Liliaceae >>> Calochortus ambiguus

Doubting Mariposa Lily

Calochortus ambiguus

Doubting Mariposa Lily, Calochortus ambiguus, photo © by Michael Plagens

Found on a rocky slope adjacent to Peppersauce Canyon, Sta. Catalina Mts., Pinal Co., Arizona. April 2012.

FLOWERS: Distinctive spring flowers of three, bed-linen white petals, six red-purplish stamens and intricate ring of purple and yellow hairs about the center.

LEAVES: The leaves are narrow, grass-like and thickenened/succulent. They are all at ground level.

RANGE: Several Mariposa Lilies are found across Arizona; this one is found from the mountains north of Tucson and hence into southeastern Arizona. Look for it on the slopes within canyons and on hillsides.

PERENNIAL HERB: Survives season to season within a subterranean bulb. The whole mature plants are less than ¼ meter tall and appear in spring. Before summer arrives the leaves are all withered.

FRUIT: Dry capsules with three segments and two rows of flat seeds in each segment.


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Liliaceae -- Lily Family

More Information:

Arizona Naturalist
Sycamore Canyons
The Flora of Arizona's Sycamore Canyons


Copyright Michael J. Plagens, page created 06 June 2012