It is native to the Outer Southern California Coast Ranges and the Transverse Ranges in Southern California, and the Peninsular Ranges in Southern California and Baja California. It is a member of the chaparral flora. Most of the California locales occur between Santa Barbara County and San Diego County, but there is a report of an isolated population along Salmon Creek in southern Monterey County.
There is a basal leaf up to 40 centimeters long which withers by the time the plant blooms.
The inflorescence bears 2 to 6 erect, widely bell-shaped to spreading flowers. Each flower has three narrow sepals and three wider and sometimes shorter petals, each segment up to 3 centimeters long. The petals are oval or wedge-shaped and may be any of a variety of colors, from cream to deep yellow to reddish purple. The petals often have reddish brown borders and flecks, and a coating of hairs on the inner surface.
- Calochortus weedii var. intermedius Ownbey - Orange, Los Angeles, + Riverside Counties
- Calochortus weedii var. peninsularis Ownbey - Baja California
- Calochortus weedii var. weedii - California + Baja California
Three taxa once considered varieties of Calochortus weedii are now generally classified as distinct species:
- Kew World Checklist of Selected Plant Families
- Jepson Manual (TJM93) Treatment: Calochortus weedii
- United States Department of Agriculture Plants Profile: Calochortus weedii (Weed's mariposa lily)
- Wood, Alphonso 1868. Proceedings of the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia 20(6): 169 in Latin
- Calfora taxon report, University of California @ Berkeley, Calochortus weedii Alph. Wood Weed's mariposa, Weed's mariposa lily
- Flora of North America, Calochortus weedii
- Gerritsen, M. E. and R. Parsons. Calochortus: Mariposa lilies & their relatives. Timber Press, 2007. 164.
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