Calochortus amabilis

Quick Characteristics:

Flower Colors: yellow
Life form: bulb

Calochortus amabilis Purdy is found on open hillsides and in open woodlands in the Coast Ranges of California. This species was featured in Mariposa,Volume 4,#4. It has yellow globe flowers and is known as Diogenes' Lantern. Its closest relative is the more robust Calochortus pulchellus which is endemic to Mount Diablo with greenish bracts. The bracts on Calochortus amabilis are pure yellow. The Jepson Herbarium Calochortus key describes the leaves of Calochortus pulchellus as green and those of Calochortus amabilis as more or less glaucous. This species can be grown in semi-shade or full sun. In full sun, sometimes the leaves take on a purplish appearance. Except for sunlight, treat this species the same as Calochortus albus.

The photos below were taken in habitat. Photos 1-2 by Bob Rutemoeller were taken on a population with unusual markings growing on a hillside in Sonoma County, CA. The first shows the habitat and the second is a close-up of the flowers. Photos 3-5 were taken by Nhu Nguyen in Napa Co., CA.

Calochortus amabilis habitat, Bob RutemoellerCalochortus amabilis close-up, Bob RutemoellerCalochortus amabilis, Napa Co., Nhu NguyenCalochortus amabilis, Napa Co., Nhu NguyenCalochortus amabilis, Napa Co., Nhu Nguyen

Photos below were taken by Bob Rutemoeller and Mary Sue Ittner April 2016 on Bear Valley Road in Colusa County where they were growing along the roadside bank and some were already in seed.

Calochortus amabilis, Bear Valley Road, Bob RutemoellerCalochortus amabilis, Bear Valley Road, Mary Sue IttnerCalochortus amabilis, Bear Valley Road, Mary Sue Ittner

The photos below by Nhu Nguyen shows the drying seed pods, the seeds inside the pods, and the bulb. In photo 3, old bulb scales can be seen increasing in size each year as the bulb gets larger and goes deeper into the medium.

Calochortus amabilis, Nhu NguyenCalochortus amabilis, Nhu NguyenCalochortus amabilis, bulb, Nhu Nguyen

The photos below are of plants in cultivation. Photo 1 by Bob Rutemoeller is of a plant growing in a deep wooden box in a shaded area. Photos 2-3 were taken by Alan Horstmann. Photos 4-6 were taken by Nhu Nguyen. Photo 6 was taken at the Tilden Botanic Garden with a pink Lewisia rediviva in the background.

Calochortus amabilis, Bob RutemoellerCalochortus amabilis, Alan HorstmannCalochortus amabilis, Alan HorstmannCalochortus amabilis, Nhu NguyenCalochortus amabilis, Nhu NguyenCalochortus amabilis, Tilden Botanic Garden, Nhu Nguyen

Calochortus hybrids - Calochortus index - Calochortus species a-b - Calochortus species c-d - Calochortus species e-lo - Calochortus species lu-n - Calochortus species o-r - Calochortus species s - Calochortus species t-u - Calochortus species v-z

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