The purple amole Chlorogalum purpureum (Agavaceae) is a bulbous, perennial soap plant endemic to central California and listed as threatened under the U.S. Endangered Species Act since 2000. Chlorogalum p. purpureum occurs in the rain shadow of the Santa Lucia Range on Fort Hunter Liggett, south Monterey Co., and on Camp Roberts, north San Luis Obispo Co. Chlorogalum p. reductum occurs in the rain shadow of the La Panza Range in central San Luis Obispo Co., mostly on Los Padres National Forest and with potential for a substantially larger occupied area on private land. We review and enhance the existing knowledge of C. purpureum, in particular its life history and ecology, distribution, population sizes, threats, current management and conservation status. In 2012, invasive plants are the primary threat to C. purpureum.