Bulbs 1-15+, increase bulbs absent or ± equaling parent bulbs, never appearing as basal cluster, not clustered on stout primary rhizome, ovoid to ± globose, 0.6-1.5 × 0.6-1.3 cm; outer coats enclosing 1 or more bulbs, brown, prominently cellular-reticulate, membranous, cells in ± vertical rows, forming irregular herringbone pattern, transversely elongate, V-shaped, without fibers; inner coats usually dark red, sometimes white to pink, cells obscure, quadrate. Leaves persistent, withering from tip at anthesis, 2-4, basally sheathing, sheaths not extending much above soil surface; blade solid, subterete or ± channeled, 10-36 cm × 0.5-2 mm, margins entire. Scape persistent, solitary, erect, solid, terete, 15-50 cm × 3-5 mm. Umbel shattering after seeds mature, each flower deciduous with its pedicel as a unit, erect, compact, 10-50-flowered, hemispheric, bulbels unknown; spathe bracts persistent, 2-3, 6-13-veined, ovate, ± equal, apex short-acuminate. Flowers stellate, 5-9 mm; tepals spreading at anthesis, white to pink, lanceolate, ± equal, becoming papery and connivent over capsule, margins entire, apex acute; stamens included; anthers yellow or purple; pollen yellow; ovary crested; processes 6, lateral, ± prominent, ± rectangular, margins entire; style linear, equaling stamens; stigma capitate, scarcely thickened, unlobed; pedicel 4-16 mm. Seed coat dull; cells minutely roughened. 2n = 14, 21, 28.
Flowering Apr--Jul. Clay soils, including serpentine, dry slopes, and open plains; 0--1800 m; B.C.; Calif., Oreg., Wash.
All three chromosome races of Allium amplectens are widespread. The triploids are achiasmatic, causing a breakdown in the first meiotic division. This is followed by a normal second division resulting in pollen dyads that are, presumably, nonfunctional; seeds are produced by apomixis. The diploids and tetraploids produce normal pollen, in tetrads, that appears to be functional.