Cercocarpus traskiae

Santa Catalina Island Mountain Mahogany

Plant Type: Shrub, Tree
Sun: Partial Shade, Sun
Drainage: Adaptable
Water: Naturalize, Occasional
Height X Width: 20' X 14'
Santa Clara County Local: No
What do these mean?



This mountain mahogany grows naturally in a single arroyo on Santa Catalina Island off the California coast at Los Angeles. It has been rare since its discovery in the late nineteenth century, and only became more so with the introduction of goats, pigs and other animals to the island. Fortunately, the plant is grown commercially while earnest effort is applied to preserving wild populations. Like other native mountain mahoganies, Santa Catalina Island mountain mahogany grows in a round to columnar form as a multi-trunk large shrub or tree. The leathery oval leaves are birch-like in appearance. The undersides have a felty covering of hairs, which is this species’ distinguishing feature. The bark is a gray mahogany. The small yellow spring flowers yield numerous clusters of seeds with long, wispy “tails.” This is a hardy and adaptable shrub, well-suited to a Channel Island themed garden in the SF Bay Area.


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