Arctostaphylos manzanita ssp. laevigata

Contra Costa manzanita

Plant Type: Shrub, Tree
Sun: Partial Shade, Sun
Drainage: Adaptable
Water: Naturalize, Occasional
Height X Width: 24' X 16'
Santa Clara County Local: No
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The common manzanita grows throughout the inner coastal ranges north of the SF Bay, and in the lower foothills of the central Sierra Nevada, with a few scattered populations elsewhere (e.g. Santa Clara County). It is currently divided into six subspecies by taxonomists. The laevigatus subspecies is found in the Mount Diablo region of Contra Costa County. It grows in an upright form to 25 feet or more with shiny leaves over mahogany bark. It is one of the taller manzanita, and one of the few that naturally grows as a tree, as opposed to a large rounded shrub. The bright white flowers appear in January. By summer these have developed into clusters of large berries. Contra Costa manzanita is a great centerpiece where a decorative tree is called for. Note, however, that like all manzanita it grows very slowly, likely taking a couple decades to reach ten feet in height.


Deer Resistant: Somewhat
Attractive to Bees: Yes
Attractive to Butterflies: Yes
Good Under Oaks: No
Evergreen or Deciduous: Evergreen