Our Plants (List)

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Abutilon palmeri - Indian mallow

Abutilon palmeri

Indian mallow


Indian mallow is one of many California natives that do exceptionally well outside of their native range. While indian mallow is native to hot, dry, rocky slopes, it grows beautifully and is quite hardy in many settings. The leaves are light olive-green and are given a frosty appearance by a…

Acer circinatum

Vine maple


Vine maple grows in the cool understory of larger trees in the northwestern portion of the state. The small lobed leaves of this maple display shades of yellow, green and red throughout the year before falling in autumn to reveal the attractively sculpted, reddish gray branches. Site vine maple in…

Acer negundo

Box elder

Achillea millefolium - Yarrow

Achillea millefolium



This population of this wide-ranging native was grown from seed collected in the Sierra foothills of Placer County, and by division ever since. It is relatively large and robust for the species with flowers of about four inches in diameter. It would be a great choice for a butterfly garden….

Achillea millefolium 'Island pink' - 'Island Pink' Yarrow

Achillea millefolium ‘Island pink’

'Island Pink' Yarrow


California’s yarrow is distinctly adaptable, occurring in a wide range of habitats from high montane to chaparral to coastal scrub. Typically dormant it springs to life with feathery foliage (millefolium = a thousand leaves) and a dense umbel of tiny flowers frequented by butterflies. While the flower is usually white,…

Acmispon argophyllus var argenteus - Channel Island silver lotus

Acmispon argophyllus var argenteus

Channel Island silver lotus


This relative of the widespread deer weed (Acmispon glaber) is endemic to several of the Channel Islands. It grows in an open mound of silvery white leaves, accented in the spring and early summer with bright yellow blooms. The silver lotus thrives in a sunny, well-draining location and should only…

Acmispon glaber - Deer weed

Acmispon glaber

Deer weed


Deerweed is found in coastal and mountainous areas throughout the state. It is a pioneer species, meaning that it quickly fills disturbed areas with dense stands that condition the soil for other plant species. Deerweed accomplishes this by fixing nitrogen, as do other members of the pea family, Fabaciae. Deerweed…

Adenostoma fasciculatum - Chamise

Adenostoma fasciculatum



Chamise is a common member of chaparral plant communities throughout California. It grows as an upright open shrub with small leaves somewhat like rosemary in appearance and twisted shredding bark. The flowers appear in late spring, covering the plant with a cream white display. A stand of blooming chamise can…

Adenostoma fasciculatum 'Nicolas' - 'Nicolas' Prostrate chamise

Adenostoma fasciculatum ‘Nicolas’

'Nicolas' Prostrate chamise


‘Nicolas’ chamise is a prostrate selection of this widespread native. It forms a dense mound two about three feet. It shares the qualities of the species (see the entry for Adenostoma fasciculatum) and adds the more compact size and cleaner appearance. ‘Nicolas’ is derived from cuttings taken on St Nicolas…

Adenostoma sparsifolium - Red shanks

Adenostoma sparsifolium

Red shanks


Red shanks grows from San Luis Obispo County south into Mexico. It grows into an open tree with shredding strips (“shanks”) or red and gray bark and feathery fronds of small leaves. The flower color is cream white as with the closely related chamise, Adenostoma fasciculatum. With careful pruning, redshanks…