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Fraxinus latifolia  Oregon ash
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Fraxinus latifolia

(Oregon ash)

Fast growing hardwood tree, native to stream and river banks or other wetland habitats from San Diego to British Columbia. Growing 30 - 70 ft. tall, this deciduous tree has medium green compound leaves. Male and female flowers occur on separate trees and are not particularly showy. They bloom just as the spring foliage is leafing out. Fruits occur on the female trees and are paddle-shaped, single samara-style fruits in drooping clusters. Birds and mammals eat its seed, but probably used more as a nesting site for birds. Plant in sun to light shade with regular to moderate water.
Fremontodendron  'California Glory' flannel bush
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Fremontodendron 'California Glory'

(flannel bush)

Beautiful, evergreen hybrid flannel bush to 20 ft. tall. Rich yellow, cup-shaped flowers cover the shrub May - June. Plant in full sun with plenty of room and no summer water once established. Fast growing and drought tolerant. The large flowers are attractive to bees and other pollinators. An excellent nectar plant for orioles. Needs decent drainage.
Fremontodendron  'Ken Taylor' flannel bush
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Fremontodendron 'Ken Taylor'

(flannel bush)

Showy native shrub for sunny, dry areas. This form of flannel bush only grows 4 - 6 ft. tall and 10 ft. (or more) wide but can be pruned to be kept narrower. Beautiful cup-shaped golden yellow flowers with orange backs bloom in late spring and into summer. Highly attractive to bees and other pollinators. An excellent nectar plant for orioles. Once established, this selection of flannel bush is completely drought tolerant and will accept infrequent summer water only where drainage is excellent.
Fremontodendron  'Pacific Sunset' flannel bush
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Fremontodendron 'Pacific Sunset'

(flannel bush)

This showy hybrid flannel bush grows in a broad “V” shape to 20 ft. tall. Covered with large orange-yellow cup-shaped flowers for a long period in spring. The large flowers attract bees and other pollinators. An excellent nectar plant for orioles. Requires full sun and plenty of room. Best if not watered once established. Needs decent drainage
Fremontodendron  'San Gabriel' flannel bush
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Fremontodendron 'San Gabriel'

(flannel bush)

Large, showy, hybrid flannel bush quickly growing to 20 ft. tall. Covered with buttercup yellow blossoms in the spring. Because of the nature of their branching, ‘San Gabriel’ and ‘Pacific Sunset’ both espalier well. An excellent nectar plant for orioles. Requires full sun. No summer water once established. Needs decent drainage.
Fritillaria affinis  checker lily
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Fritillaria affinis

(checker lily)

Charming, spring blooming, bulbous plant in the lily family, with beautiful, pendulous, bell-shaped flowers. This is California's most common fritillary and the most variable, in both size and flower color. Flowers vary greatly and can be yellow-green to purple-brown and may be beautifully checkered with brown and green, sometimes red-purple patterns. Can grow 12 inches - 3 ft tall depending on the habitat and substrate. Native to grasslands, woodlands and chaparral plant communities including serpentine soils. The easiest of the fritillaries to grow, preferring light, well drained soils, sun along the coast to light shade in hotter areas. Plants accept water in their growing season, but should be allowed to go dry once dormant. Protect from gophers, slugs and deer.
Galvezia (Gambelia) speciosa  island bush snapdragon
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Galvezia (Gambelia) speciosa

(island bush snapdragon)

Evergreen shrub native to the Channel Islands off the So. California coast. Forms an arching mound of medium green foliage 3-4 ft. tall x 5 ft. wide, but can climb or lean on other shrubs to grow even taller. Clusters of scarlet, tubular flowers decorate the branch tips in spring and intermittently throughout the year and are adored by hummingbirds. Full sun along the coast, light shade in hot areas. Drought tolerant and amenable to pruning. Hardy to around 20°F.
Galvezia (Gambelia) speciosa 'Firecracker' Island snapdragon
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Galvezia (Gambelia) speciosa 'Firecracker'

(Island snapdragon)

An interesting, evergreen subshrub from the California Channel Islands. Showy, deep-red, tubular flowers decorate the branch tips and are highly attractive to hummingbirds. The cultivar ‘Firecracker’ was selected by Tree of Life Nursery for its compact habit, growing 3 foot tall and 5 foot wide, with fuzzy, pale green leaves and larger, red, snapdragon-like flowers. A natural along the coast where it will grow in full sun to light shade, afternoon shade is best in hotter inland sites. Drought tolerant once established, but enjoys occasional summer water, especially away from the coast. Hardy to 15 -20 degrees F.
Garrya elliptica  coast silktassel
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Garrya elliptica

(coast silktassel)

Garryas are grown primarily for their winter flower catkins. The longer, pendulous male catkins have traditionally been the most sought after with selections like 'James Roof' and 'Evie'. Male and female flowers occur on separate plants and both must be present for the female to produce their lovely grapelike clusters of fruit. These plants are seed grown so males and females are of equal probability. All plants feature larger, evergreen leaves on multitrunked shrubs reaching 10 - 15 ft tall and wide. Very amenable to pruning. Plant in full sun or partial shade. Provide moderate irrigation inland, but established plants will be drought tolerant near the coast where they occur naturally. Somewhat deer resistant.
Garrya elliptica 'Evie' coast silktassel
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Garrya elliptica 'Evie'

(coast silktassel)

This cultivar of the native silktassel bush is more compact than the better known ‘James Roof’. The 8 to 10 inch catkins are shorter but more profuse. Evergreen, grows 10 ft. or taller. Sun to part shade, good drainage. Provide moderate to occasional irrigation inland. Winter is its showiest time when it is covered in silvery catkins. Discovered on the northern Sonoma Coast. Somewhat deer resistant.

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Garrya elliptica 'James Roof'

(coast silktassel)

Outstanding cultivar of the native silktassel bush. Evergreen shrub 10 ft. tall or more. Striking 12 inch long silvery catkins in winter. Sun to part shade and drought tolerant. Enjoys moderate summer water inland. Discovered along the coast of Prairie Creek State Park in Humboldt Co.. Somewhat deer resistant.
Garrya elliptica - FEMALE  coast silk tassel
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Garrya elliptica - FEMALE

(coast silk tassel)

Description coming soon!
Garrya fremontii  Fremont's silk tassel
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Garrya fremontii

(Fremont's silk tassel)

Evergreen shrub with leathery leaves and handsome dangling catkins in late winter and early spring. The male and female flowers occur on separate plants. Native to the west coast where it grows in mixed evergreen forest and chaparral plant communities.  This species is a good choice for summer-hot interior sites with well drained soils. Grows 8 - 10 ft. tall and wide in full sun to light shade and is drought tolerant once established. A good specimen shrub or candidate for hedgerow or screen where it provides cover and food for birds and small mammals. Somewhat deer resistant.
Garrya issaquahensis 'Pat Ballard' silktassel
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Garrya issaquahensis 'Pat Ballard'


An elegant winter flowering shrub, uncommon in the trade. A hybrid between Garrya elliptica and Garrya fremontii, 'Pat Ballard' is a tough evergreen growing 6-10 foot tall and wide. Pendulous pinkish gray catkins dangle from the branch tips in winter providing a spectacular display. Plant in full sun to part shade with occasional to infrequent water once established. More cold & drought tolerant than Garrya elliptica. An excellent screen, hedge or foundation shrub, amenable to pruning. Somewhat deer resistant.
Gaultheria  shallon  salal
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Gaultheria shallon


A handsome evergreen shrub, happiest in fog shrouded coastal zones. Large, leathery, dark green leaves are a gorgeous foil to the loose clusters of white to pinkish urn-shaped flowers. Fat, blue-black berries follow and are relished by wildlife and eaten by people too. Salal can grow tall in moist coastal areas of the Pacific Northwest but usually forms a ground cover 2 - 4 ft. tall and spreading in California. Best with some shade and acidic, humus-rich, moist soils. The foliage is prized for flower arranging. Deer resistant.
Grindelia camporum  Great Valley gum plant
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Grindelia camporum

(Great Valley gum plant)

A tough and attractive native perennial found in valleys and lowlands of California. An upright grower, 18-24 inches tall, with resinous foliage and stiff leaves and flower stems. Thick green flower buds hold bright yellow daisies summer through fall which are attractive to bees and butterflies. Best in full sun where it is drought tolerant once established. Tolerates heavy soils and is said to be deer resistant.
Grindelia hirsutula  hairy gum plant
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Grindelia hirsutula

(hairy gum plant)

Easy to grow, vigorous native perennial that is adaptable to a variety of soils and watering regimes. Grows 1 - 2 ft. tall with good-sized bright yellow daisies over a long period from spring into summer. An excellent nectar plant to add to a habitat garden. With a little grooming and dead heading this sometimes rough looking perennial can look quite handsome in a garden setting. Requires full sun and little to no summer water. Said to be deer resistant.
Grindelia stricta var. platyphylla 'Mendocino' spreading gum plant
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Grindelia stricta var. platyphylla 'Mendocino'

(spreading gum plant)

This selection features particularly large bright yellow 2 1/2 inch daisies over a long period in the summer. Each fat green flower bud holds a dollop of gummy white resin which protects the blooms from predators, hence the name “gum plant”. 'Mendocino' is a particularly prostrate form under 8 inches tall. Native to dunes, marshes and bluffs in coastal scrub throughout coastal California. Excellent pollinator plant. Useful in a meadow planting or with other low groundcovers and shrubs. Looks nice draping over a wall too. An adaptable plant for sun to light shade, moderate to occasional water. A natural along the coast where it tolerates wind and salt spray. Deer resistant.

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Hazardia squarrosa v. squarrosa

(sawtooth goldenbush)

For a splash of color in late summer and fall, this goldenbush is a great choice, providing clusters of cheery, golden flowers at the height of the dry season, which supply food for butterflies. Birds enjoy the seeds which follow. Rounded leaves with sawtooth margins line the stems and emit a wonderfully sweet scent. This seed strain comes from a hot area in Big Sur and is remarkably compact and rounded, reaching about 3 ft. tall and wide. We’ve found it to be very adaptable, tolerant of clay soils and zero to occasional irrigation. Likes full sun but will accept a little shade. Plant with buckwheats, Salvias, and California fuchsias. Not usually available in Northern California nurseries.
Helenium autumnale  autumn sneezeweed
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Helenium autumnale

(autumn sneezeweed)

This desirable autumn bloomer is known for its masses of bright yellow daisies up to three inches wide, perched atop stems two to three feet high. Lance-shaped leaves of light green create dense mats six inches high. Native to Northern California and much of North America where it grows in moist meadows. Will slowly increase to form small colonies. Plant in full to part sun and provide regular water. Attracts bees and butterflies. Deer resistant. Despite the common name, this plant is insect pollinated and isn't known to cause hay fever. It was originally used to make snuff, hence the name sneezeweed.  
Helenium bigelovii  Bigelow's sneezeweed
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Helenium bigelovii

(Bigelow's sneezeweed)

Native to moist meadows of California and S. Oregon, this summer flowering perennial makes a lovely addition to the garden. The cheerful golden-yellow petals turn down slightly from the rounded dome-like center. The golden daisy-like blossoms are held above the rosette of smooth green leaves on 2 - 3 ft. tall stems and attract a wide variety of insects including bees and butterflies. Despite the common name this plant does not cause allergies. It was originally used for snuff, hence the name sneezeweed. Plant in full sun to light shade with regular water. The seed for this crop is from the Pitkin Marsh in Sonoma County.
Helenium bolanderi  coastal sneezeweed
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Helenium bolanderi

(coastal sneezeweed)

Description coming soon!
Helenium puberulum  rosilla
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Helenium puberulum


Summer brings clouds of yellow pom-poms which age to brown on this native member of the sunflower family. The round flower clusters sit atop rings of small, down-turned petals, held up on flat stems lined with lanceolate leaves. The flower stalks reach 3 to 5 ft. in height and can be cut down once blooming has finished. Plant in full sun to light shade. Rosilla grows naturally by creeks and seeps and enjoys regular moisture, but will tolerate some drier periods. Attracts a wide variety of insects including bees and butterflies. Goldfinches love the seed. Reseeds readily. 
Helianthella californica  California helianthella
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Helianthella californica

(California helianthella)

Native perennial sunflower growing in chaparral and woodland communities throughout much of California. Forms clumps of dark green, lance shaped leaves under a foot tall.  Blooms April through June with small, golden-yellow sunflower heads which rise above foliage 18 inches to 2 ft. tall.  Plant in full sun to light shade where it will be quite drought tolerant once established. The flowers attract a wide array of pollinators and beneficial insects.
Helianthemum (Crocanthemum) scoparium  peak rushrose
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Helianthemum (Crocanthemum) scoparium

(peak rushrose)

An interesting and little known member of the rockrose family, found in disturbed areas of chaparral, especially abundant after fires. Smooth, rush-like, green stems, lacking obvious leaves with age, grow 6 - 20 inches tall and wide. Summer brings an abundance of little, cheerful, bright-yellow blossoms. Perfect rock garden item or planted with other dryland species such as manzanita, California lilac or native sages. Plant in full sun with good drainage, where it will be very drought tolerant once established. Tolerant of serpentine soils too.


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