Fritillaria pudica

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Fritillaria pudica

Yellow fritillary
Fritillaria pudica 001 — Matt Lavin.jpg
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Monocots
Order: Liliales
Family: Liliaceae
Subfamily: Lilioideae
Tribe: Lilieae
Genus: Fritillaria
F. pudica
Binomial name
Fritillaria pudica
  • Amblirion pudicum (Pursh) Raf.
  • Amblirion pudicum var. biflorum Torr.
  • Fritillaria dichroa Gand.
  • Fritillaria leucella Gand.
  • Fritillaria oregonensis Gand.
  • Fritillaria oreodoxa Gand.
  • Fritillaria utahensis Gand.
  • Fritillaria washingtonensis Gand.
  • Lilium pudicum Pursh
  • Ochrocodon pudicus (Pursh) Rydb.
  • Theresia pudica (Pursh) Klatt
  • Tulipa pudica (Pursh) Raf.

Fritillaria pudica, the yellow fritillary, is a small perennial plant[2] found in the sagebrush country in the western United States (Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington, Wyoming, very northern California, Nevada, northwestern Colorado, North Dakota and Utah) and Canada (Alberta and British Columbia).[3][4] It is a member of the lily family Liliaceae. Another common (but somewhat ambiguous) name is "yellow bells", since it has a bell-shaped yellow flower. It may be found in dryish, loose soil; it is amongst the first plants to flower after the snow melts, but the flower does not last very long; as the petals age, they turn a brick-red colour and begin to curl outward.[5][6][7][8][9] The flowers grow singly or in pairs on the stems, and the floral parts grow in multiples of threes.[10] The species produces a small corm, which forms corms earning the genus the nickname 'riceroot'.[10] During his historic journey, Meriwether Lewis collected a specimen while passing through Idaho in 1806.[11]

The corm can be dug up and eaten fresh or cooked; it served Native Americans as a good source of food in times past,[12] and is still eaten occasionally. Today these plants are not common, so digging and eating the corms is not encouraged. The plant is called [ˈsɨkni] in Sahaptin.


  1. ^ The Plant List
  2. ^ Barker, Joan. The Ultimate Guide To Wildflowers of North America, page 54, Parragon, 2013
  3. ^ Kew World Checklist of Selected Plant Families
  4. ^ Biota of North America Project
  5. ^ Jepson Manual Treatment
  6. ^ Flora of North America
  7. ^ Sprengel, Curt Polycarp Joachim. 1825. Systema Vegetabilium, editio decima sexta 2: 64. Fritillaria pudica
  8. ^ Pursh, Frederick Traugott. 1814. Flora Americae Septentrionalis 1: 228, pl. 8, as Lilium pudicum
  9. ^ Gandoger, Michel 1920. Bulletin de la Société Botanique de France. Paris vol 66 as Fritillaria dichroa, Fritillaria leucella, Fritillaria oregonensis, Fritillaria oreodoxa, Fritillaria utahensis, Fritillaria washingtonensis
  10. ^ a b Taylor, Ronald J. (1994) [1992]. Sagebrush Country: A Wildflower Sanctuary (rev. ed.). Missoula, MT: Mountain Press Pub. Co. p. 78. ISBN 0-87842-280-3. OCLC 25708726.
  11. ^ Schiemann, Donald Anthony, Wildflowers of Montana, page 134. Mountain Press Publishing Company, Missoula,2005.
  12. ^ Fagan, Damian (2019). Wildflowers of Oregon: A Field Guide to Over 400 Wildflowers, Trees, and Shrubs of the Coast, Cascades, and High Desert. Guilford, CT: FalconGuides. p. 129. ISBN 978-1-4930-3633-2. OCLC 1073035766.

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