Plants rarely bulbose; bulb coat, when present, membranous. Stems twining or straggling over ground, branching, 1-2 dm, usually sinuous. Leaves: basal, withering; blade linear, attenuate. Inflorescences 1-4-flowered; bracts 1-3 cm. Flowers erect; perianth open, campanulate, each member with transverse yellow band; sepals lanceolate to lanceolate-ovate, 2-3 cm; petals white with lilac tinge, darker veined, especially distally, sometimes with purple blotch distal to gland, obovate to cuneate, 3-4 cm, with sparse or dense, short or long hairs near gland, apex rounded; glands transverse-lunate or wider, densely short-hairy; filaments 6-10 mm; anthers oblong, 5-7 mm, apex obtuse or acute. Capsules erect, lanceoloid, angled, stout, 3-4 cm. Seeds light beige, flat. 2n = 14.
Flowering spring. Dry stony slopes, desert hills, mesas, creosote bush scrub, sagebrush scrub; 500--2000 m; Ariz., Calif., Colo., Nev., N.Mex., Utah.
Wiggins 1964, FNA 2002, Kearney and Peebles 1969
Duration: Perennial Nativity: Native Lifeform: Vine General: Flexuous twining or scrambling perennial 15-60 cm long, usually sinuous; bulb broadly ovoid, 1-2. 5 cm in diameter, 1.5-3 cm long, 5-20 cm below surface. Leaves: Linear to lance-linear, to 7 mm wide, basal leaves withering, gradually reduced above. Flowers: Erect, perianth open, campanulate, usually 2-4, white to pink, sepals lanceolate to lanceolate-ovate, 2-3 cm; petals white with lilac tinge, darker veined, with a purple spot on claw and transverse yellow band through gland, ovovate to cuneate 3-4 cm, with sparse or dense hairs near gland, rounded apex; anthers white 6-9 mm, about equaling or slightly shorter than filaments. Fruits: Slender, erect capsule, angled, stout, 3-4 cm long. Ecology: Found on dry rocky slopes, hillsides, mesas from 1,500-6,500 ft (457-1981 m); flowers April-June. Distribution: sw CO to se CA and c AZ Notes: Often found in the creosote scrub of the upper Sonoran Desert zone. Ethnobotany: The bulbs were roasted in ash pits and steamed before eating. Etymology: Calochortus is Greek, meaning beautiful herb, while flexuosus means tortuous, or zigzag. Synonyms: None Editor: SBuckley, 2010