Our Plants (List)

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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…

Acmispon grandiflorus

Large Leaved Lotus

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 to 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”) on 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…

Adiantum aleuticum - Five finger fern

Adiantum aleuticum

Five finger fern


While California is home to a great variety of narrow endemic plants (i.e. plants found within a very narrow geographic range), it is also home to many wide-ranging species. The five finger fern is one such plant. It ranges from Alaska to Mexico, with isolated populations even occurring in the…

Adiantum capillus-veneris

Southern maiden hair


Southern maiden hair is found in shady moist settings throughout the state, but is most common in southern California. It is one of our native plants that we share with many other US states and even other continents. The roots must be continually moist without being soggy or water logged….

Adiantum x tracyi

Tracy's maidenhair fern


The maiden hair genus, Adiantum, has just four representatives in California. One is the California maiden hair, Adiantum jordanii, which is common in dry shade and goes dormant in the summer. Another is the five finger fern, Adiantum aleuticum, which thrives in moist shade and goes dormant with the cold…

Aesculus californica - California buckeye

Aesculus californica

California buckeye


Our native buckeye is one of the few California members of the soapberry family, sapindaceae. California’s maple trees fill out the family. Buckeye grows as a multi-trunk, rounded little tree with silver-white bark and large compound leaves. The branch structure tends to be tortuous and quite ornate as the tree…