Ihe commonest kind in northern California, found in both the Sierra Nevada and Coast Mountains, and one of the most beautiful of all the Mariposas. The broad petals, each about an inch and a half long, are usually white, lilac, or yellowish, with an "eye" like that on a peacock's feather, giving the name oculatus. Occasionally they are deep rose-color, as in the colored picture, though this is not typical, and have a vivid blotch of shaded maroon and crimson and an orange spot on each petal, with some maroon-colored hairs at the base. The sepals are striped with pink and maroon and twist into spirals as they fade; the pistil and the blunt anthers are mauve; the honey-gland narrowly crescent-shaped; the leaves pale-green and the delicate stem over a foot tall. This Mariposa is extremely variable and seems sometimes to merge into C. venustus, a similar kind, and gorgeous varieties of both may be seen along the Yosemite road on the down grade to Wawona. There are many similar Mariposas, but the casual flower-lover who finds any of these beautiful flowers will probably be satisfied to know that they are Butterfly Tulips, without going into the technical peculiarities which differentiate them.
Calochortus luteus vvar oculatus.