Bulbs usually 1 of a cluster, sometimes short-rhizomatous basally, elongate, to 5 × 1-1.5 cm; outer coats enclosing 1 or more bulbs, gray or brown, reticulate, cells very coarse-meshed, open, fibrous; inner coats whitish, cells vertically elongate and regular or obscure. Leaves persistent, green at anthesis, 3-6, sheathing; blade solid, flat, broadly channeled, 25-50 cm × 3-7 mm, margins entire or minutely denticulate. Scape persistent, solitary, erect, terete or ± 4-angled, 30-50 cm × 1-3.5 mm. Umbel persistent, erect, loose, 10-25-flowered, hemispheric-globose, bulbils unknown; spathe bracts persistent, 2-3, 3-5-veined, lanceolate, ± equal, apex long-acuminate. Flowers ± stellate, 5-10 mm; tepals spreading or reflexed, white or pink, lanceolate, ± equal, withering in fruit and exposing capsules, margins entire, apex acute, midrib becoming noticeably thickened; stamens ± equaling tepals to exserted; anthers purple; pollen light yellow; ovary conspicuously crested; processes 6, central, usually connate in pairs across septa, ± erect, flattened, to 2 mm, margins lacerate, usually well developed in fruit; style linear, equaling stamens; stigma capitate, unlobed or obscurely lobed; pedicel 15-25 mm, elongating in fruit. Seed coat shining; cells each with minute, central papilla. 2n = 28. Flowering Jun--Sep. Rocky slopes, stream banks, and marshy ground, mountains; 1600--2800 m; Ariz.; Mexico.
FNA 2003, Watson 1883
Duration: Perennial Nativity: Native Lifeform: Forb/Herb General: Perennial monocot, bulbs usually 1 of a cluster, often short-rhizomatous and elongate, to 5 1-1.5 cm; outer coats gray or brown, reticulate, cells very coarse-meshed, open, fibrous; inner coats whitish, cells vertically elongate and regular or obscure. Leaves: Persistent, green at anthesis, 3-6, sheathing; blade solid, flat, broadly channeled, 25-50 cm 3-7 mm, margins entire or minutely denticulate. Flowers: Scape persistent, solitary, erect, terete or - 4-angled, 30-50 cm 1-3.5 mm; umbel 10-25-flowered, bulbils unknown; spathe bracts persistent, 2-3, 3-5-veined, acuminate; tepals spreading or reflexed, 3-5mm, white or pink, withering in fruit and exposing capsules; anthers purple; pollen light yellow; Flowers Jun--Sep. Fruits: Conspicuously crested with 6 connate, flat, paired appendages to 2mm long; stigma capitate, pedicel 15-25mm, elongating in fruit; seed coat shining, cells with minute papilla. Ecology: Rocky slopes, stream banks, and marshy ground, mountains; 5000-9200 ft (1524--2804m). Distribution: se AZ and n MEX. Notes: Distinguished by an onion smell, possession of short rhizomes or rhizome-like bulbs, fibrous outer bulb coats, linear leaves, 30-50cm tall stems (scapes) with 3 leaves, 3-5 veined bracts which subtend flowers, flowers with 6 white, flowers resembling stars with pointed petals (tepals) and the 6 flattened, central appendages projecting from each ovary or fruit. Ethnobotany: Unknown Etymology: Allium is Latin for garlic and plummerae is named for Sara Plummer Lemmon, prominent early collector in Arizona and wife of John Lemmon. The pair were the first to scale Mt Lemmon and the mountain was named in their honor. Synonyms: None Editor: FSCoburn 2014
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