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Calochortus elegans
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Cat's Ear
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Calochortus elegans

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About Cat's Ear (Calochortus elegans) Calochortus elegans is a species of flowering plant in the lily family known by the common name elegant Mariposa lily and cat's ear. It is native to the western United States from northern California to Montana. It is a perennial herb producing a slender, generally unbranched stem up to 15 centimeters in height. The basal leaf is 10 to 20 centimeters long and does not wither at flowering. The inflorescence bears 1 to 7 erect bell-shaped flowers. Each flower has three sepals and three petals with very hairy inner surfaces and edges. Each petal is greenish white in color with a purple crescent above a hairless patch at the base. The fruit is a winged capsule about 2 centimeters long.
Plant Description
Plant Type
Perennial herb

Max. Height
5.9 in (15 cm)

Flower Color
White, Purple, Green

Native Status

Natural Setting
Elevation ?
802' - 6600'

Annual Precip. ?
18.5" - 107.4"

Summer Precip. ?
1.19" - 3.77"

Coldest Month ?
32.2° F - 49.9° F

Hottest Month ?
51.5° F - 74.9° F

Humidity ?
0.49 vpd - 24.80 vpd

Landscaping Information
Nursery Availability
Never or Almost Never Available

Other Names
Common Names
Elegant Mariposa Lily

Sources include: Wikipedia. All text shown in the "About" section of these pages is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. Plant observation data provided by the participants of the California Consortia of Herbaria, Sunset information provided by Jepson Flora Project. Propogation from seed information provided by the Santa Barbara Botanical Garden from "Seed Propagation of Native California Plants" by Dara E. Emery. Sources of plant photos include CalPhotos, Wikimedia Commons, and independent plant photographers who have agreed to share their images with Calscape. Other general sources of information include Calflora, CNPS Manual of Vegetation Online, Jepson Flora Project, Las Pilitas, Theodore Payne, Tree of Life, The Xerces Society, and information provided by CNPS volunteer editors, with special thanks to Don Rideout. Climate data used in creation of plant range maps is from PRISM Climate Group, Oregon State University, using 30 year (1981-2010) annual "normals" at an 800 meter spatial resolution.

Links:   Jepson eFlora Taxon Page  CalPhotos  Wikipedia  Calflora

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