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Calamagrostis foliosa  Cape Mendocino reed grass
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Calamagrostis foliosa

(Cape Mendocino reed grass)

A beautiful native grass offering a very useful size and form for the landscape. Growing one foot tall by two feet wide with beautiful arching mounds of blue-grey blades often highlighted with purple tones. Spring brings flower spikes on arching stems with tight silvery- purple heads that turn tawny with age. A natural for coastal climates with good drainage and moderate to occasional watering, where it will tolerate wind and salt spray.  In warmer interior sites it requires some shade and additional water.  Excellent as a specimen or in mass, in a rock garden, perennial border, meadow,  woodland margin or slope.  Deer resistant.
Calamagrostis foliosa x nutkaensis 'Little Nootka' reed grass
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Calamagrostis foliosa x nutkaensis 'Little Nootka'

(reed grass)

This robust, but elegant bunchgrass was discovered by Cal Flora as a chance cross between the Pacific and Mendocino reed grasses. A beautiful garden plant which inherited useful traits from both parents. It’s shorter and denser than the Pacific reed grass, with foliage reaching up to about 1 ½ ft. high, but still retaining the lush, broad, green leaves. One can see the influence of the Mendocino reed grass in the broader form, spreading up to 3 ft. wide. The tight grass flowers are generally held upright on prolific stalks which rise to about a foot above the foliage. Plant in full sun near the coast, but provide some afternoon shade in hotter areas. Somewhat drought tolerant once established, accepting moderate to occasional irrigation. Deer resistant.

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Calamagrostis koelerioides

(tufted pine grass)

An uncommon but widely distributed mid-sized native grass appearing in meadows and on rocky ridges throughout California.  The soft green leaves reach a height of up to 2 ft. tall and will slowly spread to create a small clump.  Narrow, feathery grass flowers reach 2 - 3 ft. high in summer and age to a pale tan color.  Since this grass is new to us and we don't know of any other nurseries who have grown it, we are uncertain of its requirements. Based on this species' habitat in nature, we would recommend providing it full sun to light shade and moderate to infrequent irrigation with excellent drainage.  Deer resistant.  
Calamagrostis nutkaensis  Pacific reed grass
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Calamagrostis nutkaensis

(Pacific reed grass)

A large handsome bunch grass from the coastal regions of Monterey County to Alaska that forms huge tussocks in open moist meadows and on coastal bluffs. It can also be found as an understory at the edges of coniferous forests. Wide green blades grow 2 - 3 ft. tall with flowering culms to 4 ft. Good background or accent plant for the woodland or meadow. Will take full sun in somewhat cooler areas. Best with some summer water and partial shade inland. Deer resistant.
Calamagrostis nutkaensis 'The King' Pacific reed grass
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Calamagrostis nutkaensis 'The King'

(Pacific reed grass)

Large, handsome, evergreen native bunch grass selected by Roger Raiche in the King Range on the North Coast. Big bold deep green foliage and robust form 3 - 4 ft. tall and wide. Flower stalks rise a foot or two above the foliage. Good background or accent for woodland or partly shaded meadow. Will take full sun in somewhat cooler areas. Best with some summer water. Deer resistant.
Calamagrostis ophitidis  serpentine reed grass
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Calamagrostis ophitidis

(serpentine reed grass)

This handsome native bunchgrass deserves special attention for its tidy, upright form and sturdy character. A rare and threatened species from serpentine areas along our central coast, serpentine reed grass performs well in full sun but may need afternoon shade in hot, inland locations. The leaves reach a height of between one and two feet with flower spikes rising up to three feet tall. Does best with decent drainage and moderate summer water. Deer resistant.
Calamagrostis rubescens  pine grass
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Calamagrostis rubescens

(pine grass)

Native to wooded areas throughout the West, this slowly spreading grass forms dense drifts excellent for naturalizing in bright shade. The foliage reaches a height of about 12 inches with narrow inflorescences rising another 12 inches or so. While drought tolerant, it enjoys an occasional watering. Works well under oaks.  Deer resistant.

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Calamagrostis stricta ssp. inexpansa

(slipstem reed grass)

  Attractive apple-green leaves and a tidy appearance make this mid-sized reed grass very useful for the native garden.  The broad leaves reach a height and width of about 2ft. with inflorescences rising another foot.  Plant in full sun to light shade and water regularly.  Very rare in Sonoma County and uncommon throughout Northern California.  Deer resistant.  
Calamintha nepetoides  calamint
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Calamintha nepetoides

(calamint)

 A pretty, little, non-spreading mint relative, forming a rounded shrublet of shiny, bright green foliage to around 1’ tall and about 2 ft wide. Covered with hundreds of tiny, pale blue, nearly white blossoms over a long period in summer. Good for full sun to light shade with moderate watering. Tolerant of clay soil. One of our bee magnets. Deer resistant.
Calliandra californica  red fairyduster, zapotillo
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Calliandra californica

(red fairyduster, zapotillo)

Clusters of bright red flower filaments, resembling little dusters, adorn this Baja California native for much of the year. The dainty, fern-like leaves are generally evergreen, though they are less ubiquitous in the winter. This mid-sized shrub reaches up to about 5 ft tall over time and spreads to 5 ft wide, forming a loose, rounded mound. Hummingbirds and butterflies favor the flowers on this unusual member of the pea family. Hardy to around 25 degrees. Plant in full sun to light shade and provide occasional to no irrigation once established. Said to be tolerant of clay soils, but will not like flooding.
Callirhoe involucrata  Wine Cups, Purple Poppy Mallow, Buffalo Rose
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Callirhoe involucrata

(Wine Cups, Purple Poppy Mallow, Buffalo Rose)

This North American native perennial has an abundance of common names, a testament to its appeal and its wide distribution across North America. Growing one foot tall and spreading 3 foot or more wide, this trailing plant has attractive, deeply lobed, palmate leaves. Late spring and early summer bring masses of showy, cup-shaped blossoms of magenta, adored by bees and butterflies. Plant in full sun with decent draining soils, where it will be drought tolerant once established. Useful as an accent or in mass, spreads but doesn't smother, looks great amongst rocks, bunchgrasses, perennials and shrubs and can spill over walls. Mixed reports regarding deer resistance. A Plant Select winner as well as a Plant of Merit from the Royal Horticultural Society. 
Calocedrus decurrens  incense cedar
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Calocedrus decurrens

(incense cedar)

Cinnamon colored bark and a distinctly conical form distinguish this lovely conifer known for its appealing woodsy scent. Bright green, scale-like leaves drape from the ends of branches in dense clusters with small, flattened cones.Native to rocky areas throughout California. Slowly grows to become a large tree not suitable for a small garden. Requires decent drainage and occasional deep waterings when young. Enjoys full to part sun.Striking when planted as a single specimen or when combined with broadleaved trees such as maples and oaks. Deer resistant.
Calochortus luteus  yellow mariposa tulip
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Calochortus luteus

(yellow mariposa tulip)

This showy mariposa lily offers vibrant, golden-yellow flowers, often with reddish brown markings at the base of each of the three petals. The upward facing, bowl-shaped flowers seem to hover over grasslands on stems reaching one to two feet tall. In early winter, grass like leaves emerge from the soil, followed by the butterfly-favored blossoms in late spring and early summer. Once the flowers are done, this native bulb will go dormant. Plant in full sun to light shade with well-draining soil. Allow to go completely dry in the summer. Said to be one of the easiest of the mariposa lilies to grow in gardens. 
Calochortus tolmiei  pussy ears
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Calochortus tolmiei

(pussy ears)

Description coming soon!
Calochortus uniflorus 'Cupido' large flowered star tulip
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Calochortus uniflorus 'Cupido'

(large flowered star tulip)

While many Calochortus are known to be challenging in the garden, this selection is quite easy and blooms in abundance! Blue-grey, iris-like leaves emerge in the winter, followed by soft lavender-pink, tulip-like flowers in late spring. After flowering they will go dormant. Plant in full sun to light shade. Very drought tolerant but will tolerate occasional irrigation. This rare species has a surprisingly wide-ranging distribution, from the coast to the mountains of Northern California. Attracts native pollinators.
Calycanthus occidentalis  western spice bush
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Calycanthus occidentalis

(western spice bush)

Native along streams, rivers and moist places in California. This attractive deciduous shrub is well worth growing. Bright green aromatic foliage with interesting maroon-red flowers in spring-summer that resemble small waterlilies and have a wine-like fragrance. Can be grown as a multi-stemmed small tree, trimmed hedge or left alone to become a large background shrub. 5 - 12 ft. tall and wide. Part-shade is ideal.  Tolerates full sun with lots of moisture in somewhat cooler areas.  Accepts full shade but will grow more slowly with a more open habit. Regular to moderate water. Somewhat deer resistant.
Calystegia purpurata ssp. purpurata  purple western morning glory
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Calystegia purpurata ssp. purpurata

(purple western morning glory)

Lush, slender-stemmed vine with gray-green heart-shaped leaves scrambles up, over, or through any support provided. From late spring through early summer the plant is decorated with trumpet-shaped blossoms ranging in color from white to pink to purple. This deciduous vine can grow up to 10 ft. tall and wide. Sun to light shade, most soils, moderate to occasional watering for best appearance. Native throughout the Coast Range of California.
Calystegia purpurata ssp. purpurata 'Palomarin' purple western morning glory
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Calystegia purpurata ssp. purpurata 'Palomarin'

(purple western morning glory)

Large flowers which open pinkish-white and darken to a rich lavender distinguish this selection which we discovered near Bolinas in Marin County. This vigorous, deciduous vine spreads quickly to climb over fences and shrubs with clasping stems and grey-green, arrow-shaped leaves. Reaches a height of up to 10 ft. or so and can spread at least as wide. In late spring and early summer, the morning glory flowers put on quite the display, opening at dawn and then closing at dusk. Does great in full sun but also enjoys a little shade, especially in hot, inland areas. Likes moderate irrigation but will become somewhat drought tolerant once established. Hummingbirds and native pollinators are drawn to the flowers. 
Camassia leichtlinii 'Alba' great camas
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Camassia leichtlinii 'Alba'

(great camas)

Description coming soon!
Camassia leichtlinii ssp. suksdorfii  great camas
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Camassia leichtlinii ssp. suksdorfii

(great camas)

Similar to the common camas, but with larger, star-shaped flowers ranging in color from soft to dark violet-blue on stems up to 3 ft tall. Native to grasslands and moist meadows that dry out in the summer. Also found in open, well lit woodlands. Easy to grow in full sun to light shade in a variety of soil types, including heavy clay. Allow to go dry after seed is set, where it will go completely dormant. This eye catching beauty is appealing to bees, butterflies and hummingbirds. An excellent container plant and cut flower. Deer resistant.
Camassia quamash  common camas
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Camassia quamash

(common camas)

Camas lily is a beautiful native bulb, producing stunning displays of sky blue to violet-purple, star-shaped flowers. Found throughout much of the western United States, growing in moist meadows and grasslands that dry out in the summer. Important species to native peoples, who encouraged the bulb through fire management. Historical accounts describe fields of blue from the massive floral displays. Easy to grow in full sun to very light shade and tolerant of a wide variety of soils, including heavy clay. Long, slender leaves give way to erect racemes of blossoms, to 2 ft. tall in late spring. Allow to go dry once seed set commences. Dormant in the winter. An excellent container plant and cut flower. A favorite of bees, butterflies and hummingbirds. Deer resistant.
Campanula prenanthoides  California harebell
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Campanula prenanthoides

(California harebell)

Plant description coming soon.
Campanula rotundifolia  harebell
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Campanula rotundifolia

(harebell)

This charming little perennial is found growing around the world in the Northern Hemisphere, including Northern California. Forms a basal mound of small, heart-shaped, green leaves with slender flowering stems rising to about a foot tall. Sweet, little, pendant, lavender-blue, bell-shaped flowers, bloom sporadically in the summer and into the fall. Grow in lightly shaded woodland settings with gravelly soils and regular moisture. Perfect rock garden, crevice or container plant. Bee pollinated.
Cardamine californica  milk maids
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Cardamine californica

(milk maids)

One of California's most widespread and earliest spring wildflowers, often beginning to bloom in the winter. Found in somewhat shady locations in a number of plant communities, this slender perennial has rounded basal leaves. Flower stems 10 inches to 20 inches tall are topped with four petaled flowers of pure white to soft pink. This sweet harbinger of spring is easy to grow given a little shade and winter rain. After flowering and setting seed it dies back to its roots where it goes dormant until next year's rains awaken it. Good under oaks.
Carex amplifolia  bigleaf sedge
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Carex amplifolia

(bigleaf sedge)

Plant description coming soon.
Carex barbarae  basket sedge
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Carex barbarae

(basket sedge)

Widely distributed native sedge that is an important traditional basket fiber plant. Bright green sharp blades in clumps 1 - 3 ft. tall and spreading. Oval-shaped tufts of small reddish-brown flowers on spikes at the tip of the flowering stems. An attractive sedge, though it can be invasive. For sunny or partly shaded areas with regular to moderate moisture. Drought tolerant in clay soils or with some shade.  Handsome container plant too. Often used in bio swales and riparian restoration. Deer resistant.
Carex densa  dense sedge
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Carex densa

(dense sedge)

While uncommon in nurseries, this semi-evergreen sedge forms green tussocks which are very useful in seasonally moist meadows and open woodlands. Elongated, chunky seed heads rise above the dense leaf blades on slender stalks up to 2 ½ ft. tall. The foliage reaches 1 to 2 ft. high and slowly spreads to form small clumps. Useful for smaller gardens where you want a sedge that doesn’t spread super vigorously. Tolerates summer drought in somewhat heavier soils. A little extra irrigation will keep this sedge more evergreen. Native to much of California and north to Washington. Deer resistant.
Carex globosa  round-fruit sedge
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Carex globosa

(round-fruit sedge)

Here is a sturdy and useful woodland sedge native to well-drained soils in wooded areas. Grows 6 - 12 inches tall and spreads slowly to form bright green tussocks. Useful as a filler among shrubs or trees in filtered shade where it tolerates drought; but some summer water will keep it looking fresh for longer. Great under oaks. Deer resistant.
Carex mertensii  Mertens' sedge
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Carex mertensii

(Mertens' sedge)

This is one of our most ornamental native sedges, forming clumps up to 2 ft. wide with gracefully arching leaves radiating out from the center. Tall flower stalks reaching up to 3 ft. high sit well above the foliage with dangling, soft, fuzzy inflorescences perched elegantly from the tips. The Mertens’ sedge hales from moist meadows and bright woodlands in the Klamath Mountains of Northern California, but does well in lowland climates as long as it is kept moist. Plant in light shade. Combines beautifully with columbines, angelicas, cardinal and seep monkeyflowers, and fringecups. Will go dormant in winter, only to remerge with lush green growth in the spring. Deer resistant. 
Carex nudata  torrent sedge
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Carex nudata

(torrent sedge)

Native to below the high water mark along perennial water courses. Forms a bright green, dense, arching mound with interesting black flowers in spring. Best in moist soils, full sun to light shade. 1 - 2 1/2 ft. tall and wide. Lovely yellow fall color in colder locations. Winter deciduous. Beautiful in containers too. Deer resistant.
Carex obnupta  slough sedge
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Carex obnupta

(slough sedge)

From moist coastal sites to shady redwood forests comes this tall sedge, one of the tallest of our native sedges. Spreads vigorously to form dense drifts up to 4 feet in height. One of the more shade tolerant sedges, the slough sedge can grow under the darkness of a redwood canopy but will also accept full sun as long as it has access to moisture. A great plant for naturalizing in moist areas. Used by native peoples for basket making.  
Carex pansa  California meadow sedge, dune sedge
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Carex pansa

(California meadow sedge, dune sedge)

A durable spreading sedge which can be used as a lawn substitute or unmowed meadow. Growing 8 -12 inches tall and spreading by rhizomes to form dense colonies of curling dark green foliage. The foliage is evergreen in mild climates and grows well in full sun to partial shade with regular to occasional water. Too much drought causes summer dormancy. Flowers appear in early spring but are not real showy. Deer resistant.
Carex praegracilis  field sedge, clustered field sedge
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Carex praegracilis

(field sedge, clustered field sedge)

Similar to Carex pansa but growing taller. The fine textured grass-like blades can reach 12 inches tall and spreads freely by rhizomes to form a thick weed smothering groundcover. Useful for meadows, green roofs, bio-swales, erosion control and as a lawn substitute. Can be left natural where it has a lush tousled appearance or trimmed occasionally for a low turf-like appearance. Tolerates drought, inundation, poor soils, salt spray, heat, cold, shade and foot traffic. Plant in sun to light shade where it requires some summer moisture but far less than a conventional lawn. Will go summer dormant if allowed to get too dry. Deer resistant.

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Carex praegracilis 'Chisai'

(compact field sedge)

An excellent cultivar of the native field sedge, selected for it's compact form and slower spreading habit. Increases by short rhizomes to form a sturdy, dark-green carpet, 6 -8 inches tall and 1 - 2 ft wide. Grows more clumping and significantly tighter than the rapidly spreading forms more typical of the species. Still, it will form a solid, small scale ground cover or turf substitute, between stepping stones or mixed with bulbs and perennials for a meadow affect. Plant in full sun to light shade with occasional to moderate water. Tolerates light foot traffic. Deer resistant.
Carex serratodens  two tooth sedge
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Carex serratodens

(two tooth sedge)

From serpentine meadows comes this lush, blue-green sedge. Our form grows 1 - 2 ft. tall and spreads at a moderate pace, creating broad drifts over time. Needs moderate to regular moisture and full sun to part shade. Often goes semi-dormant in winter at which time the plants can be cut back to just a few inches. A useful sedge for gardens on serpentine or for bank stabilization where it can provide cover for tree frogs and other critters. Does not require serpentine soils to thrive. Deer resistant.
Carex spissa  San Diego sedge
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Carex spissa

(San Diego sedge)

Native to watercourses in coastal sage scrub, chaparral and oak woodlands from San Luis Obispo County to San Diego County. Has proven adaptable and easy to grow here. Wide silvery blades 3 - 4 ft. tall with brown nodding flowers. Sun to light shade. Regular to moderate water. Deer resistant.
Carex tumulicola  foothill sedge
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Carex tumulicola

(foothill sedge)

This is the TRUE Carex tumulicola, the foothill sedge, not to be confused with the so called Berkeley sedge which is correctly identified as Carex divulsa and is non-native AND invasive.  Foothill sedge has a wide distribution in California and north to Washington.  A tough and adaptable tufted evergreen growing 12 inches (or more) tall and spreading slowly by underground rootstocks. Useful as an informal groundcover under shrubs or trees, for a meadow planting or for soil stabilization where the spreading roots help control erosion.  Best with some shade unless right along the coast.  Responds to water but is able to tolerate periods of dryness.
Carpenteria californica  bush anemone
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Carpenteria californica

(bush anemone)

Long in cultivation, this native, evergreen shrub is rare in the wild, with a limited distribution in their native habitat. Forms a multi-branched shrub, 5 - 7 foot tall or more and nearly as wide, with dark green, leathery, lanceolate shaped leaves, which provides a dark foil to the brilliant white flowers. Late spring brings terminal clusters of white, 2 -3 inch, sweetly scented, anemone-like blossoms with yellow centers. An adaptable shrub which makes a striking specimen or foundation plant in a woodland area with morning sun and afternoon shade. Responds well to pruning and can be trained as an espalier. Drought tolerant, but appreciates occasional summer water. Flowers enjoyed by bees and butterflies.
Carpenteria californica 'Elizabeth' California bush anemone
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Carpenteria californica 'Elizabeth'

(California bush anemone)

A beautiful native evergreen shrub 5 - 7 ft. tall and 4 ft. or more wide. Blooms May-July with sweetly scented, pure white, yellow-stamened, camellia-like single flowers. This cultivar is especially free flowering with smaller than usual (2 inch) flowers in masses of up to 20 in each of the terminal clusters. Said to be more disease resistant. Has a narrow upright appearance which is unusual for a native shrub. Best with light shade or morning sun. Drought tolerant, but appearance is improved with some summer water. Does want decent drainage.
Ceanothus  'Antonette' California lilac
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Ceanothus 'Antonette'

(California lilac)

An exciting introduction by Native Sons Nursery which was discovered in their landscape. ‘Antonette’ is believed to be a cross between Ceanothus arboreus and Ceanothus ‘Cynthia Postan’ with unusual elongated leaves which remind us of a rockrose. Grows 8 – 10 feet tall and 6 – 8 feet wide with spectacular displays of frosted, violet-blue flowers in early spring. Before they fully emerge, the flower buds display a pleasing rosy color. Plant in full sun with occasional to little summer water once established. Valuable habitat plant, providing food and cover for birds, bees and butterflies.
Ceanothus  'Berkeley Skies' California lilac
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Ceanothus 'Berkeley Skies'

(California lilac)

A seedling selection from the Botanic Garden at UC Berkeley, thought to be a cross between Ceanothus megacarpus and Ceanothus gloriosus. Forms an upright shrub 8-15 ft. tall with small leathery leaves and stiff arching habit.  The eye-catching flowers are soft lilac in color with a deep purple center eye to each flower.  It comes into bloom quite early, often beginning in late January and February where they are much adored by bees in search of nectar. Ceanothus require decent drainage, full sun and are drought tolerant once established.
Ceanothus  'Better Than Ray Hartman' California lilac
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Ceanothus 'Better Than Ray Hartman'

(California lilac)

A friend of ours, Eric Nelson, discovered this spectacular selection growing on a property near where he lived. Masses of rich, blue-purple flowers held in large sprays cover the plant in spring, attracting bees and butterflies. The seeds which follow feed an array of birds. Reaches 10 – 15 ft. tall and wide with larger, deep-green, rounded leaves. We believe this plant is an existing cultivar, but none of the Ceanothus experts have been able to reach a consensus on exactly which one, hence the peculiar name referencing a selection which it resembles. Plant in full sun to light shade and water occasionally or less once established.
Ceanothus  'Blue Jeans' California lilac
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Ceanothus 'Blue Jeans'

(California lilac)

Not the color of denim exactly, the profuse springtime blossoms of 'Blue Jeans' are a rich lavender-purple. Erect evergreen shrub 6 ft. tall and wide with small shiny green leaves. Vigorous and fast growing. Best in full sun with little to no water once established. Tolerates heavy soils. Shrubby Ceanothus provide seeds eaten by bushtits, mockingbirds, quail and finches, as well as cover for birds.

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Ceanothus 'Blue Ray'

(California lilac)

  A Suncrest Nursery introduction, this is a cross between two popular cultivars, Ceanothus 'Ray Hartman' and Ceanothus 'Dark Star'.  Grows 10 feet tall by 15 ft. wide with deep green textured leaves on sturdy stems forming a large mound. Deep vivid blue flowers in dense clusters cover the shrub in spring. Plant in full sun with occasional to no summer water once established. Ceanothus, when in flower, are highly attractive to pollinators of all sorts.  
Ceanothus  'Celestial Blue' California lilac
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Ceanothus 'Celestial Blue'

(California lilac)

A beautiful hybrid California lilac selected and introduced by Las Pilitas Nursery. Luminous, rich blue flowers, in tight, conical clusters put on a massive display in spring with the added bonus of sporadic blooming through summer and into fall. Growing 6-8 ft. tall and wide with a mounding habit. Useful as an accent, informal hedge or screen shrub where it grows in full sun to light shade with little to no water once established. Ceanothus are an excellent addition to the habitat garden attracting a myriad of insects and birds.
Ceanothus  'Centennial' California lilac
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Ceanothus 'Centennial'

(California lilac)

This low growing Ceanothus has bright, cobalt-blue flowers and small dark-green, shiny leaves. Spreads quickly to around one foot tall by 6 - 8 feet wide.  The flowers are displayed in profusions of small pom-poms colored an intense deep-blue set above small glossy foliage. Drought tolerant but will tolerate moderate irrigation in faster draining soils. More shade tolerant than many Ceanothus but will take full sun except in hot, inland areas. Selected by Roger Raiche at Horseshoe Cove, Sonoma County. 
Ceanothus  'Concha' California lilac
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Ceanothus 'Concha'

(California lilac)

An adaptable shrub growing 6 ft. tall and wide, with a dazzling display of glowing purple-blue flowers in the spring. The gracefully arching branches carry dark green shiny leaves and are tolerant of light pruning. Thrives in full sun with little or no water once established. More tolerant of heavy soils and summer watering than most ceanothus. Shrubby Ceanothus provide seeds eaten by bushtits, mockingbirds, quail and finches, as well as cover for birds.
Ceanothus  'Coronado' California lilac
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Ceanothus 'Coronado'

(California lilac)

Phil van Soelen selected this striking natural hybrid from along the Sonoma Coast. It was named for the late David Coronado, our dear friend and a talented plantsmen. Compact habit growing to around 2 ft. tall and 6 ft. wide with dark green, deeply veined, toothed leaves. Frosty blue buds open to luminous deep blue blossoms in early spring. Perhaps best in somewhat cooler climates where it performs beautifully in full sun with moderate to no water once established. Ceanothus are excellent habitat plants providing cover and food for wildlife. The early flowers provide nectar for pollinators and seeds for birds. The myriad of insects attracted to the flowers are an added attraction to birds.
Ceanothus  'Dark Star' California lilac
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Ceanothus 'Dark Star'

(California lilac)

This popular small leaved shrub reaches 4 - 6 ft. high by 6 - 10 ft. wide. The electric cobalt-blue flowers cover the plant in spring and are very popular with bees and butterflies. Plant in full sun and provide decent drainage. Not a good choice for hot, inland areas. Drought tolerant. 'Dark Star' is VERY similar to 'Julia Phelps' but differs mainly in size. 'Dark Star' tends to stay a little smaller. Shrubby Ceanothus provide seeds eaten by bushtits, mockingbirds, quail and finches, as well as cover for birds.
Ceanothus  'Frosty Blue' California lilac
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Ceanothus 'Frosty Blue'

(California lilac)

  A Rancho Santa Ana introduction from the mid 1970's. This upright evergreen shrub reaches 8 to 12 feet tall and 10 to 15 feet wide with glossy green, textured foliage.  Flowers in late spring with 2-4 inch panicles of beautiful blue flowers with a frosted appearance due to the white bracts on the buds.  Useful as a specimen or screen due to its rapid growth. Amenable to pruning and can be trained into a small tree or espaliered subject. This reliable cultivar tolerates heavy soils better than most upright Ceanothus. Does best in full sun and will be drought tolerant once established. California lilac are valuable additions to the habitat garden. 

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Ceanothus 'Joan Mirov'

(California lilac)

A naturally occurring hybrid from the Sonoma Coast selected by Roger Raiche and introduced by the U.C. Berkeley Botanic Garden. Low spreading habit with a dense form grows 4 ft. tall spreading widely 6-10 ft. or more. The small dark green shiny leaves are topped with an abundance of dark pink buds opening to cobalt blue flower clusters in the spring.  An excellent bank cover where a dense ground covering shrub is needed on a sunny dry site.  When planted inland a little afternoon shade and some summer irrigation is best. Ceanothus are valuable habitat plants where they offer food and cover and excellent forage for pollinators.
Ceanothus  'Joyce Coulter' California lilac
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Ceanothus 'Joyce Coulter'

(California lilac)

A very useful medium sized mounding evergreen groundcover discovered in 1956 by John Coulter. Grows 3 - 5 ft. tall and spreads 12 ft. or more wide. Medium-blue flowers cover this shrub in spring. Tolerates garden conditions better than most Ceanothus. Responds well to shearing and can easily be kept to a more compact size. Plant in full sun where it is drought tolerant but best with some summer water in hot interior sites. Shrubby ceanothus provide seeds eaten by bushtits, mockingbirds, quail and finches, as well as cover for birds.
Ceanothus  'Julia Phelps' California lilac
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Ceanothus 'Julia Phelps'

(California lilac)

This much admired hybrid Ceanothus features a compact and bushy form, about 6 to 8 ft. tall and 8 ft. wide. Spectacular in spring when glowing dark indigo flowers cover the plant, accented by reddish buds. Small and crinkled dark green leaves provide an excellent backdrop for the richly colored flowers. Plant in full sun. Needs good drainage and summer drought once established. Does not do well in hot, interior climates. Very hard to distinguish from 'Dark Star', 'Julia Phelps' is somewhat larger. Shrubby Ceanothus provide seeds eaten by bushtits, mockingbirds, quail and finches, as well as cover for birds.
Ceanothus  'Ray Hartman' California lilac
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Ceanothus 'Ray Hartman'

(California lilac)

Beautiful large shrub rapidly grows 12 - 20 ft. tall and wide. Dark, shiny green foliage with large, medium blue spike-like flower clusters in the spring. Tolerates pruning and can be trained as a small tree or sheared to create a tall hedge. This selection is especially adaptable, tolerating heat, some summer water and drought. Plant in sun or very light shade. 'Ray Hartman' is a cross between the species C. arboreus and C. thyrsiflorus var. griseus. Ceanothus provide habitat and forage for a wide variety of birds, bees and butterflies.
Ceanothus arboreus 'Cliff Schmidt' island ceanothus
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Ceanothus arboreus 'Cliff Schmidt'

(island ceanothus)

Selected from Santa Cruz Island by Native Son's Nursery, this handsome cultivar has a strong upright habit, growing into a tall and spreading shrub as much as 15-20 ft. tall and wide. Large dark green glossy leaves have white felted undersides. Medium blue flower spikes blossom in late winter to early spring and often again in fall. Excellent for coastal gardens in full sun, give some afternoon shade and a little summer water in warmer inland sites. This large shrub can be pruned into a lovely small tree. Ceanothus are excellent additions to habitat gardens where they provide food, cover and nesting sites for birds and beneficial insects.  
Ceanothus confusus  Rincon Ridge ceanothus
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Ceanothus confusus

(Rincon Ridge ceanothus)

Plant description coming soon.
Ceanothus cordulatus  mountain whitethorn
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Ceanothus cordulatus

(mountain whitethorn)

Plant description coming soon.
Ceanothus cuneatus  buckbrush
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Ceanothus cuneatus

(buckbrush)

One of California's most widespread species offering a variety of forms. Typically buckbrush grows as an arching shrub growing 5 - 8 ft. or more tall and wide with small, thick, leathery leaves. Flowers can range from white to lavender to purple and are produced in small tight clusters in early spring. When in full bloom, the powerfully sweet scent of the flowers engulfs the visiting hiker. An excellent choice for hot dry conditions and difficult sites where it will grow in full sun with little to no water once established. Valuable addition to the habitat garden where it provides food and cover for a wide array of wildlife, birds, bees and butterflies. Said to be deer resistant.

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Ceanothus cuneatus - flat form

(prostrate buckbrush)

This unusual form of the ubiquitous buckbrush comes to us from Yerba Buena Nursery. Reaches a height of only 1 - 2 ft. and spreads out to 6 ft. or more. Pale blue flowers appear in early spring and perfume the air with their sweet fragrance. Bees and butterflies are drawn to the flowers while birds enjoy the seeds which follow. An excellent groundcover for hot, dry banks requiring no irrigation once established. Needs full sun and good drainage. Likely to be deer resistant.

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Ceanothus divergens ssp. confusus

(Rincon Ridge ceanothus)

A species of special concern due to its limited distribution in the wild and continued habitat loss. The Rincon Ridge ceanothus is worth considering for those hot inland gardens where some of the more commonly available coastal ceanothus may not be as long lived. Forms a low growing mound of decumbent stems with small holly-like leaves usually under a foot tall. Flowers in dense clusters in early spring are lavender-purple. Plant in sunny areas with good drainage and little to no water once established. Ceanothus are wonderful additions to the habitat garden attracting a wide array of wildlife. This species is likely to be deer resistant.
Ceanothus foliosus  wavyleaf ceanothus
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Ceanothus foliosus

(wavyleaf ceanothus)

Not commonly found in the trade, this rugged shrub is native to dry slopes of the Coast Ranges nearly throughout the state. Grows to around 3 ft. tall by 6 ft. wide, with glossy wavy-edged leaves and brilliant blue flower clusters in the spring. Perfectly suited for dry banks and slopes in hot summer areas where it tolerates heat, drought and even winter cold. Not tolerant of summer water once established.  Excellent for the habitat garden where it provides nectar to pollinators, larval food for moths and butterflies and cover and seed for birds.
Ceanothus gloriosus var. exaltatus 'Emily Brown' Navarro ceanothus
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Ceanothus gloriosus var. exaltatus 'Emily Brown'

(Navarro ceanothus)

One of the earliest blooming California lilacs. A low spreading evergreen shrub 2 - 4 ft. tall, 8 - 10 ft. wide with dark green hollylike leaves. Flowers of dark violet blue in 1 inch clusters cover the shrub in early spring. Sun and drought tolerant, but will need some afternoon shade in hot areas. Shrubby ceanothus provide seeds eaten by bushtits, mockingbirds, quail and finches, as well as cover for birds. Perhaps the most deer resistant of the ceanothus.
Ceanothus gloriosus var. gloriosus 'Anchor Bay' Point Reyes ceanothus
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Ceanothus gloriosus var. gloriosus 'Anchor Bay'

(Point Reyes ceanothus)

This Point Reyes ceanothus grows 1 - 2 ft. high or more and spreads 8 ft. wide or more with an attractively dense and luxuriant appearance. The evergreen foliage is dark green and holly-like in shape. Flowers of blue-violet cover the plant in spring. Sun to light shade. Drought tolerant along the coast - a little extra water inland but will tolerate up to moderate irrigation. Ceanothus are great additions to the habitat garden offering food and cover for birds and nectar for bees and butterflies. This species is somewhat deer resistant.

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Ceanothus gloriosus var. gloriosus 'Heart's Desire'

(Point Reyes ceanothus)

One of the lowest growing ceanothus, under one foot tall and spreading three or more feet wide. The small, holly-like leaves line stems which tightly hug the ground. Performs better than most ground cover ceanothus on relatively hot inland sites. Flowers of lavender-blue appear in early spring. Sun, decent drainage, moderate to little summer water once established. Ceanothus are excellent additions to the habitat garden offering flowers for pollinators and seeds for birds. Deer resistant.
Ceanothus griseus 'Kurt Zadnik' Carmel ceanothus
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Ceanothus griseus 'Kurt Zadnik'

(Carmel ceanothus)

Selected by Roger Raiche of the UC Berkeley Botanic Garden from the northern Sonoma Coast. Grows about 3 ft. tall and 10 - 15 ft. wide. The flower buds are very dark with beautiful rich indigo blue flowers, perhaps the darkest of any ceanothus. This fine selection is a prolific bloomer and works well to cover large banks in a hurry. Low to moderate irrigation. Shrubby ceanothus provide seeds eaten by bushtits, mockingbirds, quail and finches, as well as cover for birds.
Ceanothus griseus var. horizontalis 'Diamond Heights' Carmel ceanothus
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Ceanothus griseus var. horizontalis 'Diamond Heights'

(Carmel ceanothus)

Grown for its beautiful golden variegated foliage, this low growing shrub spreads 3 - 5 ft. wide and up to 1 ft. high. Scant, light blue flowers in spring contrast nicely with the yellow foliage. Best with light shade in warmer regions. Enjoys some summer water though drought tolerant once established. Discovered from a colony of cultivated Carmel ceanothus in San Francisco in the area known as Diamond Heights.
Ceanothus griseus var. horizontalis 'Yankee Point' Carmel ceanothus
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Ceanothus griseus var. horizontalis 'Yankee Point'

(Carmel ceanothus)

An energetic bright green shrub growing up to 3 ft. tall and spreading rapidly to 10 - 12 ft. wide. Powder blue flowers in the spring. A good evergreen, weed-smothering groundcover for full sun to light shade. Drought tolerant, but appreciates an occasional summer watering and will accept moderate water. Tolerant of hot interior locations as long as some shade and irrigation are provided. Older specimens may reach up to 5 ft. tall, especially when side pruned. Ceanothus are great additions to the habitat garden offering food and cover for birds and nectar for bees and butterflies.
Ceanothus hearstiorum  Hearst ceanothus
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Ceanothus hearstiorum

(Hearst ceanothus)

A rare species with limited distribution in San Luis Obispo County. One of the lowest of the ceanothus, up to 12 inches tall and 6 ft. wide. Often completely flat with a star-like pattern of growth. Medium-blue flowers sit atop the narrow, wrinkled leaves in spring. Sun to light shade. More shade tolerant than most Ceanothus, making it a suitable option for under the dappled shade of oaks. Drought tolerant but will accept occasional irrigation. Excessive irrigation will shorten the life of this species. Provide good drainage.

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Ceanothus incanus

(coast whitethorn)

A common and widespread Ceanothus found in the coast ranges of northern California but rarely cultivated in gardens. Probably best suited to conditions similar to where it would be found in the wild. Sunny slopes, canyons, the dappled shade in woodlands, with decent drainage, no to little summer water and full sun to light shade. Growing 5-10 ft. tall with arching rigid branches, whitish bark, stout twiggy spines and evergreen oval leaves of grey-green. Plumes of fragrant white flowers in the spring attract a wide array of insects, birds and butterflies.  
Ceanothus integerrimus  deer brush
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Ceanothus integerrimus

(deer brush)

Deer brush is an excellent addition to the dry garden, featuring an abundance of blue, white or even pink flower plumes in late spring. One of the few deciduous species, displaying soft flat leaves which fall in autumn and reemerge in spring. Deer brush is an open upright shrub, growing 5 - 12 feet tall with many different growth habits. A variable species found in a wide range of habitats throughout the state. Often used in restoration for its rugged qualities and ability to deal with summer heat and winter cold. This crop, grown from seed collected near Lake Sonoma has white flowers. Plant in full sun to light shade with good drainage. Little to no summer water once established.  

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Ceanothus maritimus 'Point Sierra'

(Santa Barbara ceanothus)

An excellent choice for a small scale ground cover, this rare Ceanothus is found on coastal bluffs and low hills in northern San Luis Obsipo County. Even though it is native to the coast it does surprisingly well inland. Smaller and slower growing than most Ceanothus, it blooms very early often beginning in late January or early February. 'Point Sierra' was selected from Arroyo de la Cruz by Native Son's Nursery. Grows 2-3 ft. tall and wide with small, thick, leathery leaves and a dense mounding habit looking almost like Cotoneaster. Rounded clusters of blue-violet flowers from dusty white buds in late winter provide an early nectar source for pollinators of all sorts. A natural for coastal areas in full sun but has proven durable inland when it is provided a little shade. Tolerates heavy soils. Drought tolerant once established. Somewhat deer resistant.
Ceanothus maritimus 'Popcorn' Santa Barbara ceanothus
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Ceanothus maritimus 'Popcorn'

(Santa Barbara ceanothus)

A special white-flowered form of a very rare species from Hearst Castle in San Luis Obispo County. This rugged groundcover ceanothus reaches up to 3 ft tall and spreads to 5 ft wide, an excellent candidate for parkway strips and drier borders. The thick, rigid leaves are serrated along the margins and colored a pleasing gray-green. In spite of its coastal origin, 'Popcorn' tolerates sun and heat quite well, but will enjoy a little afternoon shade in the hottest interior locations. It has been long-lived and very drought tolerant here in Fulton, even putting up with our heavy clay soil. A fabulous pollinator plant which also provides food and cover for birds.
Ceanothus maritimus 'Valley Violet' Santa Barbara ceanothus
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Ceanothus maritimus 'Valley Violet'

(Santa Barbara ceanothus)

Valley Violet ceanothus is a tough and reliable shrub introduced by the UC Davis Arboretum as an "Arboretum All-Star", one of their 100 top recommended plants. This relatively small Ceanothus grows 2 ft. tall by 4 ft. wide with small leathery leaves and gorgeous dark-violet flowers in early spring. Though native to coastal bluffs of San Luis Obispo County, it performs well in both coastal and inland situations. In hot inland sites it may be best with a little afternoon shade. Drought tolerant once established. For a Ceanothus it is slower growing and has proven to be long lived and tolerant of many soil types. A wide array of pollinators are attracted to its flowers. Deer resistant.

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Ceanothus papillosus - Upright Baja Form

(wartleaf ceanothus)

This cold hardy selection from Baja California is highly useful in the garden setting thanks to its tall, upright form and narrow, vaselike shape. Many customers ask us for a big but narrow form of ceanothus. This is one of the few selections that fits the bill. Plants reach 8 – 10 ft tall, but only reach 3 – 4 ft wide, making it ideal for a privacy screen in a small area. Indigo blue flowers cover plants in spring, followed by little seed capsules which are relished by birds. The crinkly, dark-green leaves are elongated and create a nice foil for brighter green plants, such as Salvia and Artemisia. As with all ceanothus, the flowers are loved by a large array of pollinators. Plant in full sun to very light shade and water infrequently once established. Needs decent drainage.
Ceanothus parryi  Parry's ceanothus, ladybloom
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Ceanothus parryi

(Parry's ceanothus, ladybloom)

Nicknamed ladybloom, this ceanothus is underused in California gardens. Native to chaparral plant communities in the coast ranges of California and Oregon. Upright habit with arching branches growing 8-12 ft tall with dark green narrow leaves. Long, narrow flower clusters of medium to deep blue blossoms in the spring. A useful screen, specimen or informal hedge in full sun with little to no water once established. Tolerant of inland heat and conditions. Ceanothus are great additions to the habitat garden offering food and cover for birds and nectar for bees and butterflies.
Ceanothus rigidus 'Snowball' Monterey lilac
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Ceanothus rigidus 'Snowball'

(Monterey lilac)

A good selection for a dry sunny hillside or as a cascading plant for a wall. A densely mounding shrub 3 - 5 feet tall and wide. Covered with ball-like clusters of white flowers in late winter. Plant in full sun with occasional to no summer water once established. Ceanothus are great additions to the habitat garden offering food and cover for birds and nectar for bees and butterflies. Deer resistant.  
Ceanothus thyrsiflorus  blue blossom
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Ceanothus thyrsiflorus

(blue blossom)

One of the larger ceanothus, forming a good sized shrub or small tree 6-25 ft. tall. Shiny, bright green leaves and good sized clusters of flowers which can range from pure white to pale blue, sky blue through rich darker shades of blue in the spring. Easy, fast growing. Can be trained into a single trunk if desired. Useful as a specimen tree, background shrub or informal hedge. Drought tolerant when established. Ceanothus are fantastic habitat plants providing food and cover for a wide range of creatures. Bees and other pollinators frequent the flowers as do butterflies. Several butterflies and moths use it as a larvel food source. Bushtits, mockingbirds, quail and finches eat the seeds.  
Ceanothus thyrsiflorus 'El Dorado' variegated blue blossom
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Ceanothus thyrsiflorus 'El Dorado'

(variegated blue blossom)

Fast growing upright evergreen shrub 6 - 10 ft. tall and wide. Dark green foliage with golden yellow variegation is a nice foil for the medium blue flowers in spring. Plant in full sun along the coast, some shade for hot interior sites. Drought tolerant once established. Occasional summer irrigation can be helpful, but allow soil to dry between waterings. Good for an informal hedge. An excellent habitat plant.

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Ceanothus thyrsiflorus 'Oregon Mist'

(blue blossom)

Blue blossom ceanothus grows in chaparral and woodland plant communities of the outer coast ranges, from Santa Barbara, California to southern Oregon. Selected by Xera Plants, 'Oregon Mist' hails from the northern most part of its range, suggesting superior cold hardiness.  Growing 8 - 15 ft. tall and wide with deep-green shiny leaves and baby-blue flowers in narrow clusters, blooming in mid to late spring. This fast growing evergreen makes a fine stand alone specimen or as part of a shrubby border or screen, where its particularly dense form can be used to great effect. Plant in sun to light shade where it will be drought tolerant once established. An excellent addition to the habitat garden where it provides food and cover for a wide array of insects and birds. 
Ceanothus thyrsiflorus 'Skylark' California lilac
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Ceanothus thyrsiflorus 'Skylark'

(California lilac)

Valued for its compact habit and late flowering, this selection offers clusters of dark blue flowers on short stems appearing just as other ceanothus are finishing their show. 4 - 5 ft. tall and 6 - 7 ft. wide with shiny evergreen foliage. This would be a ceanothus to try in hot areas. 'Skylark' is believed to be a cross between Ceanothus thyrsiflorus and C. velutinus. Shrubby ceanothus provide seeds eaten by bushtits, mockingbirds, quail and finches, as well as cover for birds.
Ceanothus thyrsiflorus 'Snow Flurry' California lilac
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Ceanothus thyrsiflorus 'Snow Flurry'

(California lilac)

A beautiful large shrub or small tree 12 ft. (or more) tall and wide. Rich deep green foliage and profuse clusters of radiant pure white flowers in the spring. Adaptable, dependable and garden tolerant. Does well in coastal and inland situations. Best in full sun. 'Snow Flurry' is drought tolerant, but would appreciate a little summer water in hot regions. Not tolerant of very cold winter conditions. Selected from the Big Sur coast. Shrubby ceanothus provide seeds eaten by bushtits, mockingbirds, quail and finches, as well as cover for birds.
Ceanothus velutinus  snowbrush ceanothus
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Ceanothus velutinus

(snowbrush ceanothus)

Plant description coming soon!
Cephalanthus  occidentalis  button willow
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Cephalanthus occidentalis

(button willow)

Button willow is a large deciduous shrub, at times becoming treelike, growing 6-12 ft. (infrequently as much as 20 ft.) tall and wide. It lines waterways in foothills and warm interior valleys. Smooth, glossy bright- green leaves clothe this shrub during the growing season, turning yellow in the autumn. Creamy white flowers are arranged in spherical heads with protruding styles which give the flowers a pincushion-like appearance.  The summer blooming, fragrant flowers are extremely rich in nectar and attract bees, butterflies and other pollinators.  The globe-like fruits persists into winter and attract birds. Plant in sun to light shade with regular summer water or continuously moist or wet soils.  An excellent habitat plant offering food and cover for a wide array of insects and birds.
Cercis occidentalis  western redbud
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Cercis occidentalis

(western redbud)

Beautiful in all its seasons, the native redbud is well worth growing. Highly ornamental multi-trunked shrub or small tree 6 - 20 ft. tall and wide. Masses of brilliant rose-purple blossoms in early spring followed by conspicuous long seed pods that start out lime green and age to purple-brown. The rounded heart-shaped leaves emerge apple green and develop to bluish-green. In colder areas, the leaves take a nice fall color of yellow or red. The smooth silvery-gray branches are picturesque in the winter landscape. Plant in full sun to light shade with good drainage. Drought tolerant. Important nectar and pollen source for bees. Attracts hummingbirds too.
Cercocarpus betuloides  mountain mahogany
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Cercocarpus betuloides

(mountain mahogany)

Mountain mahogany is an adaptable, semi-evergreen native shrub (8 to 12 ft. high and wide) or small tree with charming birch-like leaves set against silver-grey bark. Small, honey-scented flowers appear in spring followed by seeds with intriguing silky, curled, feather-like tails. The open habit contrasts nicely with evergreen shrubs or rock walls where its pleasing silhouette can be seen. Flowers are attractive to bees. Mountain mahogany is one of those rare native shrubs which can easily be pruned for narrow garden beds. Grows on dry slopes in chaparral or at the edges of woodlands. Provide full sun to light shade. It is surprisingly adaptable to diferent water regimes, from moderate irrigation to no water once established. Somewhat deer resistant.
Cercocarpus betuloides var. blancheae  Island mountain mahogany
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Cercocarpus betuloides var. blancheae

(Island mountain mahogany)

This rare and beautiful variety of our native mountain mahogany offers larger, birch-like leaves with fuzzy and whitish undersides. The highly useful from generally reaches 8 – 15 ft. tall, but only spreads to about 6 ft. wide, making it ideal for narrow locations where a screening, evergreen, fast-growing bush is needed. Small, disk-like, creamy flowers appear in the spring, followed in summer by seed pods with hairy, grey tails which curl upwards, giving the plant a silver halo. Over time, the trunks are covered in a smooth, grey bark. The Island mountain mahogany typically grows much more rapidly than our local variety and is tolerant of moist or dry soils once established and part shade to full sun. Heat isn’t an issue. A great candidate for a container, where it is very amenable to pruning.
Cercocarpus ledifolius  curl-leaf mountain mahogany
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Cercocarpus ledifolius

(curl-leaf mountain mahogany)

Large shrub or small, multitrunked, evergreen tree, 6 - 30 ft. tall, native to arid mountains of the western US. Often takes on a gnarled, picturesque form depending on the conditions it is growing in. Adapted to dry, rocky slopes where it weathers drought, extreme heat and cold, wind and snow. Slow growing, densely branching, with dark green, leathery leaves with curled under edges and silvery undersides. Trunks develop beautiful, red-brown bark with silvery new growth. The flowers are similar to our local mt. mahogany species, small, greenish- yellow, smelling of honey, and attractive to pollinators. The fruits are long, silvery, plumes that glow when back lit. Plant in full sun to light shade with good drainage where it will blend well with other dryland shrubs and perennials and requires little input. Fixes nitrogen. Interesting container or bonsai subject. 
Chamaecyparis lawsoniana  Lawson's cypress
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Chamaecyparis lawsoniana

(Lawson's cypress)

Plant description coming soon.
Chamaecyparis lawsoniana 'Nidiformis' dwarf Port Orford cedar
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Chamaecyparis lawsoniana 'Nidiformis'

(dwarf Port Orford cedar)

A very unusual and hard to find form of the native Port Orford cedar. Nidiformis is Latin for “having the form of a nest”, an apt descriptor for this dwarf with dense growth and graceful, cascading branches. The delicate, finely dissected foliage is grey-green with hints of blue, providing an excellent contrast to large-leaved, dark-colored perennials. Very slow growing, usually forming a low mound a few ft. high and several ft. wide. Needs good drainage and moderate to infrequent irrigation. Enjoys full sun near the coast, but wants some afternoon shade in hot climates. Good in a container.
Chilopsis  linearis  desert willow
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Chilopsis linearis

(desert willow)

A graceful, summer-blooming, deciduous shrub, native to desert washes where it grows in gravelly soils and intense heat. Forms a large, multi-branched shrub or small tree reaching up to about 15 ft. tall with narrow, willow-like leaves. Terminal clusters of showy, trumpet-shaped flowers in summer come in shades of white, to pink and purple that attract hummingbirds and butterflies. Long, bean-like pods follow and hold on into winter. Enjoys hot climates with plenty of sun, decent drainage and occasional to moderate water. Avoid cool coastal conditions and heavy wet soils. Grows fast when happy with no pest or disease problems, demanding little. A great option for along sidewalks.
Chlorogalum angustifolium  narrowleaf soap root
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Chlorogalum angustifolium

(narrowleaf soap root)

You may be familiar with the common soap plant and its tall stalks of delicate white flowers. But this unusual, diminutive species of soap root is much smaller, only reaching 1 – 2 ft. high. Rarely offered in nurseries, this species has short, narrow leaves which are not wavy like the common soap plant. Grows in dry grassland and open woodlands in the northern Sierra foothills and coast range. Enjoys full sun to light shade and no additional irrigation once established. Tolerates clay. The seed for these plants came from Windsor and was generously given to us by Vicki Wilson.
Chlorogalum pomeridianum v. pomeridianum  soap plant
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Chlorogalum pomeridianum v. pomeridianum

(soap plant)

Known for their large, fibrous bulbs historically used by indigenous peoples and early settlers for soap, food and to stupefy fish. Long, wavy-margined leaves form a rosette in winter followed in late spring by tall, airy flower stems bearing small white flowers that open in the late afternoon and evening. Great in naturalistic settings in full sun to light shade. Needs to go summer dry once established. Larval food source for the Western Brown Elfin butterfly.
Chrysolepis chrysophylla var. chrysophylla  golden chinquapin
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Chrysolepis chrysophylla var. chrysophylla

(golden chinquapin)

Description coming soon!
Chrysolepis chrysophylla var. minor  bush chinquapin
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Chrysolepis chrysophylla var. minor

(bush chinquapin)

Description coming soon!
Cirsium occidentale  cobweb thistle
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Cirsium occidentale

(cobweb thistle)

A beautiful NATIVE and NON-WEEDY thistle. Forms a  rosette of gray woolly and spiny leaves the first year. A BIENNIAL, flowering occurs the second year with tall, narrow spikes of showy maroon-red to pink flowers with cobweb hairs on the bracts. A striking plant, usually reaching 4 - 6 ft tall when blooming, for sunny areas with good drainage and low to no irrigation. An excellent addition to the habitat garden where it attracts bees, butterflies and hummingbirds. Butterflies such as the painted lady and the mylitta crescent depend on cobweb thistle as a larval food source. Deer resistant.

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Clarkia amoena ssp. whitneyi

(Whitney's Clarkia)

Nearly extinct in the wild, this beautiful ANNUAL was found in coastal communities in Mendocino and Humboldt Counties. Growing 3 ft. tall and wide,  the branched leafy stems are topped with a long succession of 3 inch cup- shaped flowers.  The large flowers are light lavender-pink with whitish areas at the base of the petals.  Clarkias make excellent garden plants needing very little and giving much in return.  Plant in full sun to light shade, as a filler among trees or shrubs, in mixed flower border or meadow planting. A little water while flowering will extend their show.   Good container subject too.  Excellent cut flowers.  Seems to be deer resistant.  Attractive to bees and butterflies.
Clarkia  rubicunda  ruby chalice clarkia, farewell to spring
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Clarkia rubicunda

(ruby chalice clarkia, farewell to spring)

Showy and floriferous, with gorgeous, cup shaped blossoms of silky, pink-purple petals featuring a dark red center with a long bloom from late spring into summer. This endemic, ANNUAL wildflower grows in openings of woodlands and chaparral near the coast, mostly in the central part of state. Grows 2-ft. tall or more in full sun with low water needs. Tolerant of heavy soils, the exuberant blossoms attract bees, butterflies and moths, including Sphinx moth species. Performs well in containers and is an excellent cut flower too. Deer resistant.
Clarkia williamsonii  Fort Miller fairyfan
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Clarkia williamsonii

(Fort Miller fairyfan)

The incredibly showy flowers of this native ANNUAL will take your breath away in late spring and early summer. The large, lavender-pink, papery flowers feature deep, burgundy-red brush strokes and cheery white centers. Plants form a loose mound about 1 ½ ft. around. Butterflies and other pollinators love Clarkias. Native to the Sierra foothills, where it grows in full sun to light shade. Plants enjoy moisture while they are developing in the winter and spring, but are accustom to hot and dry summers. Needs decent drainage. Reseeds readily, as long as there is exposed soil nearby. Deer resistant!
Claytonia sibirica  candy stripe, Indian lettuce
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Claytonia sibirica

(candy stripe, Indian lettuce)

This native perennial with white to pink candy-striped flowers seeks shady, moist conditions. Our form is from Sonoma Coast and has particularly pink flowers. Related to miners lettuce, candy stripe produces dark green, succulent, edible leaves in low rosettes. Blooms over a long period beginning in spring and will frequently reseed. A sweet, spreading, low ground cover for a shady area with regular moisture. A charming and colorful addition to the forest garden, combining beautifully with ferns, wild ginger and false Solomon’s seal.
Clematis integrifolia  bush clematis, Mongolian bells
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Clematis integrifolia

(bush clematis, Mongolian bells)

This clematis, from central Europe, Russia and China, only grows a few feet tall and doesn't climb like most of its relatives in the genus. It has an upright, spreading habit and can grow 1 - 3 foot tall and 2 - 3 foot wide. Can be staked to stand erect or allowed to go its natural way, mounding and weaving itself among other perennials and shrubs. Lovely, bell-shaped, flowers in summer are followed by attractive silvery seed heads. Blossoms can be blue, rose or white. Plant in full sun to very light shade with regular water. Flowers are attractive to bees, butterflies, hummingbirds and the seeds favored by songbirds. Foliage is toxic and bitter and not eaten by deer or rabbits. 
Clematis lasiantha  chaparral clematis
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Clematis lasiantha

(chaparral clematis)

This deciduous native vine climbs over shrubs and trees in full sun to part shade. Produces a wealth of one inch, creamy-white flowers in spring and summer followed by large fluffy attractive seed heads. Use clematis to adorn a pergola or archway, or to train up trees or other structures. Plant in full sun to light shade. Little water once established. Generally deer resistant.
Clematis ligusticifolia  virgin's bower
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Clematis ligusticifolia

(virgin's bower)

Native to riparian areas where the vining stems will climb and weave their way up and over shrubs and trees. Large masses of fragrant, small creamy-white flowers bloom in summer. Beautiful, silvery, feather-like fruits follow and are as attractive as the blossoms. The intricately divided leaves on long stems can climb 20 - 30 ft. Full sun to light shade with regular to moderate summer water. Deciduous. Generally deer resistant.
Collinsia heterophylla - Sierra Form  purple Chinese houses
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Collinsia heterophylla - Sierra Form

(purple Chinese houses)

A striking form of a native annual wildflower found in open woodlands in much of California. The open lipped flowers are stacked in tiers, and said to look pagoda-like. In this Sierra form from Tuolumne County, the upper and lower lips are dark purple with a light central patch with scarlet nectar guides. This charming woodlander is best in bright shade, in edges and openings, or under oaks, where it blooms from mid spring to early summer. Grows around 2 ft. by 2 ft. When happy it will reseed and those seedlings will require no irrigation. A bee and butterfly favorite.
Comarostaphylis diversifolia  summer holly
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Comarostaphylis diversifolia

(summer holly)

Looking something like a toyon but closely related to manzanita, this handsome evergreen is a useful landscape subject. Native to chaparral communities near the coast in Southern California where it usually grows on north facing slopes. Growing slowly 6-15 ft. or more tall with shredded red bark and shiny dark green foliage. Creamy-white urn-shaped flowers in racemes bloom March-May are attracive to hummingbirds and pollinators. The dark-red rough textured fruits in summer are enjoyed by many kinds of birds. Grow as an upright shrub or with selective pruning can be trained into a small tree. Useful as a specimen, background screen or informal hedge in full sun to light shade with good drainage. Will except summer water only with good drainage and is drought tolerant once established.  
Cornus glabrata  browntwig dogwood
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Cornus glabrata

(browntwig dogwood)

The bluish-white fruits of this species are reputed to be especially good for attracting birds. Small creamy white flowers appear in spring on subtly beautiful arching branches. A type of stream dogwood, it forms thickets with time, 6 - 10 ft. tall. Deciduous. Prefers moisture and some shade. Western tanager and warblers eat the flowers. Grosbeak, Northern oriole, flickers, spotted towhee, Western bluebird, robins, mockingbirds, bandtailed pigeon, waxwing and quail eat the fruits. A great plant for stream restoration.
Cornus nuttallii  Pacific dogwood
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Cornus nuttallii

(Pacific dogwood)

Spectacular native tree with pleasing horizontal branching, gorgeous white flowers, handsome fruits and good fall color.  An elegant specimen tree though notoriously challenging in cultivation. Easiest to grow within its native range. Dislikes poor drainage, fertilizing, pruning, and injury to the tender bark.  Drought tolerant in shady, cool situations but enjoys occasional to moderate water in fast draining soils. Once established it can become a show stopping specimen in a wooded garden, under high branching trees, along stream courses and slopes with eastern or northern exposure. Birds relish the red fruits.      
Cornus sericea  western redtwig dogwood
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Cornus sericea

(western redtwig dogwood)

Redtwig dogwood is a spreading shrub growing 6 ft. or more tall, forming broad thickets along creeks and rivers. The beautiful red stems stand out in the winter landscape once they loose their leaves in the fall. Flat topped flower clusters are creamy white and are followed by clusters of white fruits. Often takes on nice fall color before loosing its leaves. Plant in full sun to light shade with regular to moderate watering. Does great on heavy clay soils and is a very good soil stabilizer. An excellent habitat plant where it provides food and cover. The fruits are very popular with birds. At the nursery, bluebirds and mockingbirds compete aggressively for the fleshy white fruits. 
Cornus sericea 'Flaviramea' yellowtwig dogwood
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Cornus sericea 'Flaviramea'

(yellowtwig dogwood)

This thicket-forming dogwood is grown for its beautiful yellow stems most admired in the winter season when it’s leafless. Thrives in moist places in full sun to light shade. Small creamy white flowers in flat topped clusters appear in spring. Grows 6 ft. tall and spreads with time to form an attractive drift. The white fruits are loved by birds.
Cornus sericea 'Hedgerow's Gold' redtwig dogwood
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Cornus sericea 'Hedgerow's Gold'

(redtwig dogwood)

A striking selection of redtwig dogwood, discovered near the Deschutes River in Eastern Oregon and introduced by Hedgerows Nursery. The large leaves of soft green have a broad, irregular, bright golden edge. In autumn the leaves turn an attractive ruby color. Forms a thicket that easily reaches 6 ft. tall by 6 ft. wide. The red stems stand out in the winter landscape after the leaves have fallen. Flat topped cluster of white flowers appear in spring and are followed by small white fruits enjoyed by birds. Best with regular water, good light and protection from the hot afternoon sun.
Cornus sericea ssp. occidentalis 'Tomales Bay' western redtwig dogwood
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Cornus sericea ssp. occidentalis 'Tomales Bay'

(western redtwig dogwood)

This selection of the native creek dogwood is from Tomales Bay, Marin County, where it forms broad clumps 6 ft. or more tall and wide. The beautiful red stems stand out in the winter landscape. Flat topped flower clusters are creamy white followed by small white fruits. Good fall color. Plant in full sun to light shade and give regular irrigation. Western tanager and warblers eat the flowers. Grosbeak, Northern oriole, flickers, spotted towhee, Western bluebird, robins, mockingbirds, bandtailed pigeon, waxwing and quail eat the fruits.

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Cornus sessilis

(black fruit dogwood)

Native to moist ravines and stream banks of the coast ranges and the Sierra Nevada Mts.. This deciduous shrub or small tree grows 5-10 ft. or more tall and wide. Beautiful shiny, jade green leaves with prominent lateral veining decorate the graceful green barked stems. Small, yellow flowers appear early as it leafs out in the spring and are followed by oval fruits. Fruit color changes as it matures from greenish-white to yellow, red and finally shiny black which attract a wide range of fruit eating birds. Foliage can take on pretty tones of yellow and red in the autumn. Thrives in moist shady locations, but will grow well with just part shade and moderate to occasional summer water once established.
Corylus cornuta ssp. californica  western hazelnut
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Corylus cornuta ssp. californica

(western hazelnut)

Western hazelnut is a handsome, open, multi-stemmed shrub native to forests from Santa Cruz northwards in the Coast Range, and from Sequoia northwards in the Sierra foothills. Winter deciduous with decorative dangling catkins in winter. The soft, somewhat hairy leaves turn yellow in the fall. Small amounts of tasty nuts are produced in late summer and are relished by wildlife and people. Part shade with some moisture, but will tolerate fairly dry conditions once established. Usually grows 6 - 10 ft. tall. Somewhat deer resistant.
Crataegus douglasii  western hawthorn
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Crataegus douglasii

(western hawthorn)

Western hawthorn occurs in wet meadows or borders of forests in northern California. A large deciduous shrub or small tree 6 - 20 ft. tall with reddish-brown bark and formidable thorns. Small white flowers in flat topped clusters in late spring are followed by red fruits that ripen to black. The fruits are highly attractive to birds. Plant in full sun to partial shade with regular to moderate water. This shrub tends to sucker and could be encouraged to form a thicket. Or, amenable to pruning, it can be trained into a slender tree.
Cynoglossum (Adelinia) grande  Pacific hound's tongue
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Cynoglossum (Adelinia) grande

(Pacific hound's tongue)

From woodlands throughout Northern and Central California comes this alluring bluebells relative. Dainty flower clusters ranging in color from periwinkle blue to lavender appear on slender stalks in the spring. The leaves are what gives this plant its name: grey-green and tongue-shaped, emerging in the winter from basal roots. Plant in bright shade and don’t water once established. Needs decent drainage. Once this plant goes to seed it will go dormant, re-emerging in late winter. A great accent plant for under the dry shade of deciduous oaks.
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