Although there are a number of spring bulbs in bloom at the moment locally, today’s photograph features a summer-blooming geophyte. Leichtlin’s mariposa is native to California, Nevada, and Oregon, though it is by far more common in California than elsewhere.
The epithet honours Max Leichtlin, a German horticulturist who specialized in growing bulbous plants. It doesn’t seem Leichtlin ever traveled to California, so perhaps he was the first in Europe to grow this species to a flowering stage (or, maybe, botanical favoritism?). Comments would be welcome specifically about whether there has been a long-term trend in moving away from naming species after people in favour of geographical or descriptive terms (with the notable exception of celebrity-naming).
Additional photographs of this species are available via CalPhotos: Calochortus leichtlinii; it is always intriguing to see with species of Calochortus the range of morphology in the flower (petal size, petal shape, petal colour, petal patterning, and so on).
Biology resource link: Since some of you were quite interested in the lichen voting from the previous entry, here’s a lichen-centred article submitted to BPotD by UBC Botanical Garden’s director, Patrick Lewis. How a Guy From a Montana Trailer Park Overturned 150 Years of Biology, published in The Atlantic in 2016, features work done by University of Alberta lichenologist Dr. Toby Spribille.