Silvia Saunders wrote this about ‘Papilio’ in her notebook: “Peach pink dwarf with conspicuous veinings, stigmas bright pink, otherwise heart all gold and cream. Early for race; foliage slightly hairy.”  The name ‘Papilio’ refers to the veining resembling veins of butterfly wings, Papilio being the genus of swallowtail butterflies.

I received this cultivar from two different individuals in 2021.  The one from a longtime Saunders collector and hybridizer is shown in the photos above.  The one from a European source is not correct – it has a white single flower (photo on right) somewhat resembling ‘Astarte’ but I’m hoping it might be ‘Carolina’ which I don’t have and which seems to be more common in Europe than in the USA.


Cultivar: Papilio
Year: 1950
Seedling No: 16200
Parentage: lactiflora X “Lobata of Perry”
Flower: Color: light pink
Form: single
Blooms: Week 3
Carpels: 2, light green
Stigmas: bright pink
Disc: creamy white
Stamens: white, some pink and yellow striping
Plant: Habit: upright
Foliage color: medium green
Foliage form: narrow leaves
Height: young plant so can’t give the height
Availability: Extremely Rare, no commercial source