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Erythronium taylorii

(Taylor's Fawn-Lily)


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Critically Endangered

Threat status

Common Names

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Common Names in English:

Taylor's Fawn-Lily, Erythronium propullans

Common Names in Polish:

Erythronium propullans

Common Names in Spanish, Castilian:

Erythronium propullans


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Family Liliaceae

Herbs perennial , with a rhizome, bulb, or corm, rarely shrubby or treelike. Leaves basal and/or cauline, alternate, opposite, or whorled , parallel or rarely reticulate veined. Inflorescence a raceme , panicle, spike, umbel, reduced panicle, or other, or flowers solitary. Flowers bisexual , rarely unisexual , actinomorphic , rarely zygomorphic; bracts present or absent; bracteoles present or absent. Perianth usually corollalike, 6-merous, rarely 4- or 8-merous, in 2 whorls; segments free (tepals) or united . Stamens 6, rarely 3, 4, or 8, inserted opposite perianth segments; filaments free or adnate to perianth, rarely connate into a corona ; anthers usually 2-loculed, basifixed or dorsifixed and versatile, introrse , latrorse , or extrorse , dehiscing usually by vertical slits. Carpels usually connate for most or all of their length , rarely only at base ; ovary superior, rarely semi-inferior, 3-loculed, rarely 2- or 4-loculed, with axile placentae, or rarely 1-loculed with a parietal placenta; ovules usually anatropous . Nectaries septal, perigonal, or absent. Fruit a capsule or berry. Seeds with abundant endosperm and small embryo.

About 250 genera and 3500 species: worldwide, especially in temperate and subtropical regions; 57 genera (three endemic, two introduced ) and 726 species (379 endemic, 11 introduced) in China.[1]

Genus Erythronium

Herbs, perennial , scapose , from ovate to elongate bulbs, sometimes with small, beadlike segments of short, persistent rhizome attached; several species producing additional bulbs as sessile bulbels or at the ends of slender stolons or vertical droppers, these species typically flowering more sparingly than those without extensive vegetative reproduction. Leaves 2 (1 in nonflowering plants ), basal, ± petiolate ; blade green or mottled with purple, brown, or white, lanceolate to ovate (wider if solitary), flat to folded, 6-60 cm, glaucous in a few species, glabrous , base narrowed gradually or abruptly to petiole , margins entire or sometimes wavy. Scape green or sometimes reddish, typically elongating in fruit. Inflorescences terminal , racemose, 1-10-flowered. Flowers showy, usually nodding , sometimes held laterally or erect ; tepals 6 (as few as 4 in E. propullans), spreading to reflexed , distinct , similar, white, yellow, pink, or violet, often with basal zone of yellow or other colors, lanceolate to ovate, inner tepals auriculate at base in many species, auricles appressed to ovary and forming sac- or pocketlike hollows on adaxial surfaces; stamens 6; filaments generally slender; ovary superior; style 1, abruptly attached to ovary (or forming a beak in E. rostratum) ; stigma unlobed or 3-lobed, lobes recurved to erect. Fruits capsular , erect, obovoid to oblong , apex rounded , truncate , or umbilicate (beaked in E. rostratum), dehiscence loculicidal. Seeds brown, ± angular, ± ovoid . x = 11, 12.

Species ca. 27: all North American, except for the Eurasian Erythronium dens-canis Linnaeus and its segregates E. caucasicum Woronow, E. japonicum Decaisne, and E. sibiricum (Fischer & C. A. Meyer) Krylov; north temperate in forest and montane meadow habitats , one species (E. mesochoreum) in prairies.

Erythronium is a well-marked and distinctive genus closely related to Tulipa. In North America, Erythronium consists of distinct eastern and western groups, the former clearly having an affinity with species of the Old World. Most of the species have attractive and showy flowers, and several are well suited for naturalizing in woodland gardens.

Pressed specimens tend to fade, so leaf and flower colors and markings should be recorded on specimen labels at the time of collection . The orientation of flowers and fruits should also be recorded, and it is useful to collect bulbs of both flowering and nonflowering plants when this will not damage a population. Bulbs of Erythronium species are often more than 10 cm deep. Collectors should press flowers so that the shape of the style, stigmas, filaments, and petal bases can be observed later. Species of western North America (Rocky Mountains westward) and eastern North America (Great Plains eastward) seem to form two discrete evolutionary groups, and this geographic distinction is the first character used in the taxonomic key . Most western species can at least occasionally produce plants with multiple-flowered scapes, while eastern species always have a single flower. Bulbs of western species vary from ovoid to slender and elongate, while all eastern species have ovoid bulbs. Fruits of western species vary from obovoid to narrowly oblong, while all eastern species have obovoid fruits. In species with mottled leaves, the pattern of mottling in eastern species is a more or less random dappling (resembling that of the Eurasian Erythronium dens-canis), while in western species it takes the form of elongate lateral streaks or veining, often more or less symmetrical on either side of the midline . Several eastern species, but only a single western species (E. multiscapideum), propagate vegetatively by stolons originating largely from nonflowering bulbs. (The term €œstolon€ is used here to refer to the slender, white, elongate, underground structures found in Erythronium.) In E. propullans, one stolon per plant is produced from the flowering scape below ground level. In species with stolons, populations often contain relatively few flowering plants. In the following descriptions , measurements of bulbs and leaves refer to flowering plants. The base chromosome number in Erythronium is x = 12, except for the white-flowered species of eastern North America, E. albidum, E. mesochoreum, and E. propullans, which have x = 11. Both diploid and tetraploid species occur with each base chromosome number (2n = 22, 24, 44, and 48). Although the pollination biology of most species of Erythronium is not well known, that of the bumblebee-pollinated E. grandiflorum has been the subject of extensive study (e.g. , J. D. Thomson and D. A. Stratton 1985; J. D. Thomson and B . A. Thomson 1989). The oligolectic bee Andrena erythronii is associated with Erythronium in northeastern North America, although A. erythronii visits other species of plants, and other insects also visit Erythronium (P. Bernhardt 1977; W. E. LaBerge 1987).[2]

Physical Description

Species Erythronium taylorii

Bulbs narrowly ovoid , 40–70 mm, often forming sessile offsets . Leaves 18–35 cm; blade green, elliptic to oblanceolate , margins wavy. Scape 25–40 cm. Inflorescences 1–4(–8) -flowered. Flowers: tepals white, proximal 1/2–2/3 bright yellow, becoming pinkish in age, lanceolate, 25–45 mm, inner auriculate at base ; stamens 10–16 mm; filaments yellow, slender; anthers cream colored ; style white to cream, 9–11 mm; stigma ± unlobed or with lobes shorter than 1 mm. Capsules obovoid , 2–4 cm. [source]

Flowers: Bloom Period: February, March, April, May.


Forest openings, rocky ledges; 1300--1400 m ;[3].


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Name Status: Accepted Name .

Last scrutiny: 06-Jan-2005

Similar Species

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Members of the genus Erythronium

ZipcodeZoo has pages for 51 species, subspecies, varieties, forms, and cultivars in this genus:

E. albidum (Small White Fawnlily) · E. americanum (Adders-Tongue) · E. americanum americanum (Dogtooth Violet) · E. americanum harperi (Dogtooth Violet) · E. americanum subsp. harperi (Dogtooth Violet) · E. americanum'Pagoda' (Pagoda Trout Lily) · E. californicum (California Fawnlily) · E. citrinum (Cream Fawn Lily) · E. citrinum citrinum var. citrinum (Cream Fawnlily) · E. citrinum var. citrinum (Cream Fawnlily) · E. citrinum var. roderickii (Roderick's Fawnlily) · E. citrinum var. roderickii Shevock & Allen (Roderick's Fawnlily) · E. dens-canis (European Dogs Tooth Violet) · E. dens-canis 'Rose Queen' (European Dogs Tooth Violet) · E. elegans (Coast Range Fawn Lily) · E. grandiflorum (Yellow Avalanche Lily) · E. grandiflorum candidum (Dogtooth Lily) · E. grandiflorum chrysandrum (Dogtooth Lily) · E. grandiflorum grandiflorum (Dogtooth Lily) · E. grandiflorum ssp. nudipetalum Applegate (Avalanche-Lily) · E. grandiflorum var. multiflorum (Avalanche-Lily) · E. grandiflorum subsp. candidum (Yellow Avalanche-Lily) · E. harperi (Dogtooth Violet) · E. helenae (Pacific Fawn-Lily) · E. hendersonii (Henderson Fawn Lily) · E. howellii (Howell's Adder's-Tongue) · E. japonicum (Fawn Lily) · E. klamathense (Klamath Fawn-Lily) · E. mesochoreum (Midland Fawnlily) · E. montanum (Alpine Fawn Lily) · E. multiscapideum (Erythronium Multiscapoideum) · E. multiscapoideum (Sierra Fawnlily) · E. oregonum (Dogs Tooth Violet) · E. oregonum leucandrum (Giant White Fawnlily) · E. oregonum oregonum (Giant White Fawnlily) · E. pluriflorum (Many Flower Fawnlily) · E. propullans (Minnesota Dwarf Trout Lily) · E. purpurascens (Purple Fawnlily) · E. pusaterii (Kaweah Lakes Fawn Lily) · E. quinaultense (Erythronium Propullans) · E. revolutum (Dogs Tooth Violet) · E. revolutum 'Kondo' (Dogs Tooth Violet) · E. revolutum 'Pagoda' (Trout Lily) · E. rostratum (Beaked Trout Lily) · E. sibiricum (Fawn Lily) · E. taylorii (Taylor's Fawn-Lily) · E. tuolumnense (Tuolumne Fawn Lily) · E. umbilicatum monostolum (Dimpled Fawn-Lily) · E. umbilicatum subsp. monostolum (Dimpled Troutlily) · E. 'Rose Beauty' (Trout Lily) · E. 'White Beauty' (Trout Lily)

More Info

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Further Reading

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Data Sources

Accessed through GBIF Data Portal March 14, 2008:



  1. Xinqi Chen, Prof. Song-Yun Liang, Jie-mei Xu, David E. Boufford, Michael G. Gilbert, Rudolf V. Kamelin, Shoichi Kawano, Tetsuo Koyama, Elena V. Mordak, Junko Noguchi, Victor G. Soukup, Hiroshi Takahashi, Kamilla G. Tamanian, Minoru N. Tamura & Nicholas J. Turland "Liliaceae". in Flora of China Vol. 24 Page 73. Published by Science Press (Beijing) and Missouri Botanical Garden Press. Online at [back]
  2. Geraldine A. Allen & Kenneth R. Robertson "Erythronium". in Flora of North America Vol. 26 Page 15, 58, 153, 154, 162, 163. Oxford University Press. Online at [back]
  3. "Erythronium taylorii". in Flora of North America Vol. 26 Page 155, 159. Oxford University Press. Online at [back]
Last Revised: 2015-01-30