Calochortus uniflorus Hook. & Arn.
Monterey Mariposa Lily, Monterey Mariposa-lily, Meadow Star Tulip
Liliaceae (Lily Family)
USDA Symbol: CAUN
A small, dainty plant, the flowering stem barely reaching above the surface of the ground. Leaves are grass-like, and the upright flowers are of a shallow bowl shape. Petals are lilac, often with a purple spot at the base. Seed pods are broad and pendant.
As one of the dwarf Calochortus meadow species, Monterey Mariposa Lily is more amenable to cultivation than other species of the genus. It needs protection from gophers and moles.
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Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial
Leaf Complexity: Simple
Size Class: 0-1 ft.
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Purple
Bloom Time: Apr , May , Jun
DistributionUSA: CA , OR
Native Distribution: Coast Ranges from Monterey to Mendacino Cos.; s.w. OR
Native Habitat: Temporarily wet prairie and meadows below 500 ft.
Growing ConditionsLight Requirement: Sun
Soil Description: Temporarily wet, but well-drained, alkaline soils.
Conditions Comments: Needs protection from gophers and moles. As one of the dwarf Calochortus meadow species, meadow star tulip is more amenable to cultivation than other species of the genus.
BenefitUse Food: Bulb consumed by indigenous peoples.
Conspicuous Flowers: yes
PropagationDescription: Sow fresh seed in fall in a mix of leaf mold, loam and sand. Seed pans should be plunged in the cold frame, covered to keep out excessive moisture, and left to the end of the second year. Young bulbs can then be planted outdoors.
Seed Collection: Not Available
Seed Treatment: Not Available
Commercially Avail: yes
National Wetland Indicator Status
BibliographyBibref 1218 - Tending the Wild: Native American Knowledge and the Management of California's Natural Resources (2006) Anderson, M. Kat
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Additional resourcesUSDA: Find Calochortus uniflorus in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Calochortus uniflorus in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Calochortus uniflorus
MetadataRecord Modified: 2008-10-20
Research By: TWC Staff