Hort 29 - Complete Plant List

This list was researched and compiled by Thomas Burrows, Associate Faculty, Saddleback College
 
  Trees  |   Shrubs   |   Cacti and Succulents 
Trees:

Abies concolor, White Fir: a pyramidal, evergreen tree, which is from 50 to 200 feet tall. It has a narrow, spire-like crown and short, stiff branches. Older bark is gray and furrowed. Leaves are bluish-green, from 1 to 2 inches in length, and have a rounded tip. Cones are 3 to 5 inches long, greenish or purplish in color (becoming brown with age), and have rounded scales. Birds are attracted by fir seeds. It is common on dry slopes and rocky places, from 3000 to 10,000 feet. Represents one of the most commonly grown native firs in the garden; it is slow growing in California gardens and serves best as a container plant in Southern California. It is popularly used as a Christmas tree. Wood is of second grade quality, being used for packing cases, etc.

Acer macrophyllum, Big-Leaf Maple or Canyon Maple: a beautiful round-topped tree, which can reach a height of from 15 to 100 feet. The leaf shape is described as palmate (or finger-like), with a diameter of 8 inches. Deciduous leaves are dark green, changing to characteristic fall colors; the yellow fall colors are spectacular in cool areas. This is the true maple of Southern California. It requires plenty of room. It is common along the banks of streams and in canyons throughout California, below 5000 feet. Practically all maples in Southern California show marginal leaf burn after mid-June and lack the fall colors of maples located in colder areas. Larger maples have an extensive fibrous root system, which serves to absorb water and nutrients from the topsoil. The great canopy of leaves call for a steady supply of water; not necessarily frequent watering, but a constantly available supply of water throughout the root zone. Ample deep watering and periodic feeding will help keep the roots down. This tree is too big for a small garden or for along a street. Resistant to oak root fungus.

Acer negundo  spp. californicum, Boxelder: a deciduous maple with a height of from 20 to 70 feet. As with all Maples, the branches are opposite to each other (which is good for identification). Leaf is composed of three leaflets. Can be messy but good in a park-like setting. Keeps its foliage longer in warm areas, but will become yellow in the fall. It needs plenty of room to spread and is fast growing. Found along streams and bottom lands, below 6000 feet. Practically all maples in Southern California show marginal leaf burn after mid-June and lack the fall colors of maples located in colder areas. Larger maples have an extensive fibrous root system, which serve to absorb water and nutrients from the topsoil. The great canopy of leaves call for a steady supply of water; not necessarily frequent watering, but a constantly available supply of water throughout the root zone. Ample deep watering and periodic feeding will help keep the roots down. In locations where other maples will grow, consider this species a weed of many faults: seeds readily, hosts Box Elder Bugs, suckers easily, and is subject to breakage.

Alnus rhombifolia, White Alder: a fast growing, deciduous tree, which grows from 30 to 100 feet tall and will have about a 40 foot spread when mature. Usually has a pyramidal shape when apart from other trees. Dark green leaves are from 2 to 4 inches long and have a slightly toothed margin. The trunk is straight with a whitish to gray-brown patchy bark. The eyes on the trunk represent places where branches have dropped off during growth. Flowering begins in January with an interesting display of tassel-like greenish-yellow male catkins arranged in clusters; this display occurs before the leaves bud out. Female flowers develop into small woody cones which decorate the bare branches in winter; these cones are useful in flower arrangements. It's seeds will attract birds. It is very tolerant of both heat and wind. This tree is used quite extensively in Irvine. Planting occurs in multiples evenly planted from 6 inches to 10 feet apart. It produces considerable leaf litter. Roots are invasive; however, they will be less troublesome if deep watering practices are followed. It has a problem with aphids and in it's native areas, it is susceptible to tent caterpillars. In cultivation, the tree has a short life expectancy of about 25 to 30 years. Moist areas and riparian woodlands, below 5000 feet.

Arbutus unedo, Strawberry Tree: a small tree to 15 feet.  Evergreen with edible fruit.  Common ornamental.

Bursera microphylla, Elephant Tree: a spicy odored shrub or small tree, which may reach a height of from 4 to 10 feet. Older branches are cherry-red. Deciduous leaves are pinnately compound. The fruit is a drupe with a small yellow stone. The stems yield a resin which in Mexico is used as a cement or for the making of varnish. It is found in rocky places in the Colorado Desert.

Calocedrus decurrens, Incense Cedar: also known as Libocedrus decurrens.  An evergreen forest tree, which will reach a height of from 80 to 150 feet. It is aromatic with a straight, conical trunk with a broad base. The lower branches turn downward, while the upper branches are erect, in the from of a conical crown. The bark is cinnamon-brown, thick, and fibrous. Leaves are light green and less than 1/2 inch in length. Cones are about 1 inch long. Found on Mountain slopes and canyons, between 2400 and 8200 feet. The wood is light, soft, and durable in the ground, usually with cavities due to dry rot; it is used for shingles posts, and railroad ties. Also, this tree provides the wood most often used in the manufacture of pencils. It is also used for cedar closets and chests. The wood does not splinter and is well suited for ornamental purposes. The older trees are susceptible to root fungus. This tree is not a true cedar, but is rather a cypress. It was discovered by Captain John C. Fremont. It adapts to many western climates and in warm weather, it gives pungent fragrance to the garden. Although slow growing when first planted, it may grow 2 feet per year, once established. Deep, infrequent watering in youth will make this tree unusually drought tolerant when mature. It tolerates both heat and poor soils. A good tree to make a green wall, high screen, or windbreak.

Cercidium floridum, Palo Verde: a small tree with a short trunk and smooth blue-green bark, which grows up to 30 feet high. It is as wide as it is tall. Leaves are small, inconspicuous, and few; in fact, this plant is leafless most of the year. This plant is adapted to drought: it will drop its leaves during the driest period of the year. In the spring or during moist periods, the small yellow flowers will appear in such abundance that they almost hide the branches. When not in flower, this tree displays an intricate pattern of blue-green, spiny branches and leaf stalks, which provide a lightly filtered shade. It belongs to and beautifies the desert and desert gardens. It is fast growing in the garden. It will survive much drought; however, it is denser, more attractive, and faster growing with water and fertilizer. Washes and low sandy places, below 1200 feet.

Cercis occidentalis, Western Redbud: a large, rounded shrub or a small tree, which usually grows several trunks from a common base. It reaches a height of from 6 to 18 feet. This deciduous tree is becoming more popular in the landscape because it is interesting all year. It has blue-green, heart-shaped leaves, which will fall after the first frost. Early spring flowers are quite showy: similar in shape to Sweet Peas, arranged in clusters, and ranging in colors from magenta-pink to reddish-purple, or occasionally white. Flowers are followed by clusters of flat pods. This plant will only have a profuse flower production in areas where the winter temperatures drop to below 29 o F. It represents an appropriate tree for the garden. Dry slopes and canyons in foothills, below 4500 feet. Water regularly for the first year or two to speed growth. As it is drought tolerant, it is excellent for dry, seldom watered banks. It is resistant to Oak root fungus.

Chilopsis linearis, Desert-Willow: a large shrub or a small tree which grows between 6 and 30 feet tall. It has few to many stems with slender twigs. In age, it develops shaggy bark. Leaves are very narrow, curved, and deciduous. Flowers are funnelform with a lavender, pink, or whitish coloration and will attract birds. Flowering occurs between May and September and is followed by narrow seed pods, which will remain on the stems long afterward. This shrub grows easily and will thrive either in a well drained soil or in clay. It is highly recommended for use in dry semi-desert areas of the southwest. It can appear shaggy, but pruning will make it look handsome. As it requires hot temperatures to induce blooming, it is not recommended for coastal areas. It grows fast at first, then slows down as it approaches it's full height. Common along washes and water courses, below 5000 feet. In nature, this plant grows where it's roots can reach water; consequently, it should be given water during the summer.

Cornus nuttallii, Mountain Dogwood: an arborescent bush or tree, reaching from 12 to 90 feet tall. Deciduous leaves are large and green, turning bright red in fall.  Beautiful large white flowers appear from April to July and there is often a second flowering in September. Decorative red to orange-red berries occur during the fall and serve as a source of food for birds. This plant is not easy to grow in the garden as it reacts unfavorably to routine garden watering, fertilizing, and pruning. Injury to its tender bark provides entrance for insects and diseases. However, with exceptionally good drainage, infrequent summer watering, and shade (which prevents the bark from sunburning), there is a chance for success. Mountain woods, below 6000 feet.

Cornus occidentalis, Creek Dogwood: a spreading shrub or small tree, reaching from 6 to 18 feet tall. Deciduous leaves are large and green. This plant will often root at the tips of the branches. Flowers are small, but showy because they occur in large numbers, between May and July. Moist places, below 8000 feet. Requires ample water.

Dalea spinosa, Smoke Tree: an intricately branched shrub or small tree, armed with spines, which is from 3 to 30 feet high. It is almost leafless; leaves are small and early deciduous. When leafless, it's intricate network of gray, spiny branches resemble a cloud of smoke. Flowers appear in April through July, with a good show of fragrant, bright blue-purple blooms; flowering branches make an excellent dry arrangement. It is useful in a natural desert garden. It prefers to be located at the edge of an irrigated area. With summer water this tree will grow in rapid bursts. Easily grown from seed sown in warm weather: sow in place or in a small container and plant out. It is adapted to wash areas and the flashflood conditions found in these areas. Locally common in sandy washes, below 1500 feet.

Ficus carica, Edible Fig: a naturalized tree

Fraxinus velutina  var. coriacea, Montebello Ash: a 15 to 35 foot tall tree with deciduous, pinnately-compound leaves. It is pyramidal when young, becoming spreading and more open when mature. It's small flowers are crowded into panicles, which appear before the leaves, during March and April (flowers are not very showy). Male and female flowers are on separate trees. It produces a winged fruit in such abundance that it represents a litter problem; however, both a male and a female tree must be located in close proximity for the female to produce the fruit. Canyons and along streams, below 5000 feet. It is fast growing and it tolerates many soil types, including alkaline. It withstands hot, dry conditions and cold to about -10oF. It's chief uses are as a street tree, a shade tree, a lawn tree, and a patio-shelter tree. It is fairly pest free.

Juglans californica, California Black Walnut: a low tree with several trunks, which reaches from 6 to 30 feet or more tall. Old bark is dark, with broad irregular ridges. Deciduous leaves are large and pinnately compound. Flowers appear after the leaves unfold, sometime in April or May. Fruit is an edible nut. Locally common, below 2500 feet.

Lyonothamnus floribundus var. asplenifolius, Catalina Ironwood: a cylindrical, evergreen tree, which grows from 18 to 60 feet tall. It is known primarily for its unusual bark and unique leaf shape. The bark is red-brown to grayish and will exfoliate in narrow strips. The leaves are pinnately compound. It produces clusters of white flowers in the summer, which tend to hang on the tree, making it appear shabby. The flowers must be removed manually. It grows on dry slopes.

Metasequoia s, Dawn Redwood: deciduous tree easily to 40 feet.  Pyramidal form with lime green foliage resemembling that of coast redwood.

Olneya tesota, Desert Ironwood: a grayish tree with a broad crown, which is 15 to 25 feet tall. The bark is thin and scaly. Branches are armed with paired spines, erect in youth, and spreading in age. Gray-green leaves are pinnately compound and deciduous; the old leaves fall after bloom, but are quickly replaced with new leaves.  The showy flowers are pale rose-purple, with a sweet pea-like appearance, and occur before before the new growth of leaves in April or May. Pods are 2 inches long. This tree has an extremely hard and heavy heartwood--hence, it's name. It is deciduous in hard frosts and cannot endure prolonged freezes. It can tolerate any amount of summer heat. Found in sandy wash areas of the desert where some deep water is usually available, below 2000 feet.

Pinus attenuata, Knobcone Pine: this pine grows from 6 to 40 feet tall and will form a straggling crown with age. The old bark is thin with loose scales. Leaves are in  clusters of three, yellow green, and between 3 and 7 inches long. The cones have prominent knobs on them (hence the name). Found on dry, barren or rocky places, below 4000 feet. Wood is light, soft, and weak; it has no real timber value.

Pinus coulteri, Coulter Pine: a medium-sized pine growing from 40 to 80 feet tall, although it generally stays under 40 feet tall in cultivation. The crown is either a broad pyramid or asymmetrical. This evergreen has dense, blue-green needles, which are in clusters of 3 and up to one foot long. The bark is dark gray to blackish-brown, with thin scales. Often called the Big Cone Pine or the Widow maker Pine, as it's cones are from 8 to 12 inches long and weigh up to 8 pounds. These cones will remain on the tree for several years after releasing it's seeds. It is found on dry, rocky slopes, between 1000 and 7000 feet. This pine is named after Thomas Coulter, who was an  English forest collector. The tops of these trees are often broken off by winds and heavy snows. The wood is quite brittle; not good for commercial use. The seeds of the Big Cone Pine are hard but very tasty. Hybrid Coulters mixed with Jeffrey have been found here at Idyllwild. This pine is a member of the Yellow Pine family.

Pinus jeffreyi, Jeffrey Pine: this evergreen will reach heights of from 60 to 180 feet. It has a large, symmetrical crown. The bark is reddish brown, with small scales, and will peel easily into odd shaped sections. Especially on a warm day, the bark has a vanilla scent (although some think it has an odor of pineapple). The needles are in clusters of 3 and are from 4 to 11 inches long with a blue green color. It is similar to the young form of Pinus ponderosa;  however, it's cones are not prickly to the touch and it's bark tends to be darker. It is a member of the Yellow Pine family. This pine was discovered by the eminent Scottish botanist John Jeffrey. It is prized for it's lumber. Attractive in youth with silver gray bark and bluish foliage. One of the best natural bonsai trees. This hardy tree grows best at higher elevations and is drought tolerant. Arctostaphylos spp., Manzanitas serve as a fine understory for this pine. Found on dry, rocky slopes, mostly from 6000 to 9000 feet.

Pinus lambertiana, Sugar Pine: a very stately pine, which is the largest of all pines, reaching from 60 to 250 feet in height. It's crown is open and narrow when young, becoming flat-topped with age. Older branches are well spaced and wide spreading. The bark is reddish brown to gray, with loose scales. Note: young trees will have smooth, dark green bark. The needles are from3 to 4 inches long and occur in bundles of 5. Long cylindrical cones hang from the branch tips. A common forest tree, from 2500 to 9000 feet. It needs a great deal of room. The name is derived from it's sweet tasting sap; beware, the sap can act as a cathartic. This pine may reach an age of 500 years or more. Slow growing when young. Hardy but temperamental. It is susceptible to white pine blister rust, but usually safe if no currants or gooseberry bushes (which are alternate hosts of this rust) are nearby.

Pinus monophylla, One-Needle Pinyon Pine: this low evergreen will grow to be about 40 feet tall. Needles are mostly in groups (known as fasicles) of one, between 1 and 1-1/2 inches long, and pale gray-green. The seeds of this pine are edible and in fact, are considered one of the best. This pine is extremely slow growing in the desert environment. It makes a good bonsai and is excellent in a rock garden. Also, it fits readily into dry, rocky locations, especially when planted with Juniperus californicus. The wood is light, soft, and brittle; it is used largely for fuel and charcoal. In nature, it grows mostly on dry rocky slopes and ridges, between 3500 and 9000 feet. This plant may reach an age of 200 years or more. This pine was discovered by Captain John C. Fremont. It served as an important food source for many inhabitants of Southern California. This plant may reach an age of 250 years or more.

Pinus ponderosa, Ponderosa Pine or Yellow Pine: an evergreen which grows from 50 to 200 feet tall. Branches are short and are generally turned up at the ends. Mature trees have large plates of yellowish-red bark, while younger trees are ashen gray with small bark scales. Needles are in clusters of 3 and are a green to yellow green in color. The cones of this species are prickly to the touch, which helps to distinguish them from the Pinus jeffreyi.  Also, they are from 4 to 5 inches in length. It forms large, park-like forests, from 2000 to 8500 feet. It's wood is hard, strong, and much used for many types of construction. This long lived pine needs a great deal of room. A moderate to rapid grower which is very hardy, but it is not good in desert heat and wind. A bushy, attractive tree at all ages. Eventually for a large garden only. Small trees make a fine bonsai or large container tree. A tree to plant for posterity as it is long-lived, requiring space and time for development.

Pinus quadrifolia, Four-Needle Pinyon Pine or Parry Pine: this low evergreen has a pyramidal shape and may reach a height of 40 feet.  Needles are mostly in groups (known as fasicles) of four, between 1 and 1-1/2 inches long, and pale blue-green. It's pine nut is edible and in fact, some people consider it to be the best. The nuts were once traded much like currency. Drought tolerant. This pine was discovered by Dr. C. Parry. The wood was used for fuel and for fence posts. This plant may reach an age of 250 years or more. Dry slopes, between 2500 and 5500 feet.

Pinus torreyana, Torrey Pine: this broad, open-crowned evergreen is extremely rare: it occurs naturally here and on Santa Rosa Island; it is being cultivated in Kenya and New Zealand for its cosmetic values. It has also been planted throughout coastal Southern California. It will grow to be about 30 or 60 feet tall, if not windswept. In cultivation, it is more or less symmetrical with liberal foliage in its youth; as it matures, it develops a small crown composed of a few large branches. Needles are in groups (known as fasicles) of fives, usually over 10 inches long. Foliage is light green or greenish-gray. Cones may remain on the tree for 15 years, dropping seeds yearly. The seeds of this pine are edible. This pine seems to be more smog tolerant than other pines. It is drought tolerant and long-lived. This pine was discovered by Dr. C. Parry. Does well in a garden or naturalized landscape.

Platanus racemosa, California Sycamore: a deciduous tree, commonly located around water, which can reach a height of from 30 to 90 feet. It's main trunk often divides into a spreading or leaning secondary trunk: with care in pruning, it can be trained into a picturesque multitrunked clump. The leaves are large and palmately lobed. The bark is pale, thin, and exfoliating. Brown, ball-like seed clusters hang from the branches on long stalks through the winter; they are popular in flower arrangements. It is tolerant of heat and wind; however, this tree would profit from periodic deep waterings during the summer. This fast growing tree is great in native or wild gardens; it also works well in large, informal gardens. It is often used in lawn areas, such as parks. Along stream beds and water courses, below 4000 feet. Sycamore blight may cause leaf drop in the spring or in the summer, but the tree will eventually develop a full canopy. Fungicide applications in the spring will control anthracnose and permit vertical growth. It is also susceptible to leaf miner and red spider mites. Chlorosis may be a problem in desert areas.

Populus fremontii, Fremont Cottonwood: a large deciduous tree, with a broad open crown, which will grow from 40 to 100 feet tall. The bark is whitish and roughly cracked. The bright yellow-green leaves are lustrous, spade-shaped, varying in width from 3 to 5 inches, and has a toothed margin; they turn a bright lemon yellow in the fall. A very picturesque tree if placed in a large area. Always found in nature near water. Female trees bear masses of cottony seeds which blow about and become a nuisance; consequently, it is best to plant a male tree, which is easily grown from cuttings. Best with regular deep waterings. Do not plant near water or sewer lines and septic tanks, as the roots are invasive. Also, not for streets, lawns, or small gardens. Requires little water unless in the desert where weekly waterings are required during the hot weather if the roots haven't tapped an underground water source. It grows best under conditions of extreme temperature variations: cold winters and hot summers. It's appearance and performance is poor along the coast. Suitable for locals where fast growth, toughness, and low maintenance are considerations.  Moist places, below 6500 feet.

Populus trichocarpa, Black Cottonwood: a large deciduous tree, with a broad open crown, which will grow from 120 to 200 feet tall. The bark is grayish and furrowed in age. Leaves are dark green above and pale beneath. Along streams, below 9000 feet.

Prunus lyonii, Catalina Cherry: a small, dense evergreen which may reach up to 50 feet high. It can be used as a tree or as a hedge. It will tolerate shade. It produces edible fruit in the summer. Very reliable. Found in canyons on Santa Catalina, San Clemente, Santa Cruz, and Santa Rosa Islands.

Pseudotsuga macrocarpa, Big Cone Spruce: a pyramidal, evergreen tree, from 35 to 60 feet high, with drooping branches. Bark is divided into broad, rounded ridges. Needle-like leaves are blue-green and spirally arranged on the branches, although they appear to be in a flat spray because the needles are turned at the petiole base. Needles are 3/4 to 1-1/4 inches long with a pointed tip. Cylindrical cones are 4 to 6 inches long and have a 3 fingered bract overlapping each rounded scale. Drought tolerant. This little known tree is a relative of Pseudotsuga menziesii,  the Douglas Fir, which is found in Northern California and represents one of the most economically important trees in the U. S. Dry slopes and canyons, between 2000 and 6000 feet.

Quercus agrifolia, Coast Live Oak: an evergreen oak which reaches a height of from 30 to 80 feet. Often in the form of a broad dome, but this varies by location. The trunk is smooth or with broad checkered ridges in old trees. The acorn matures during the first year. This hardwood is fast growing when young, especially with ample water: after 10 years growth, it will reach a height of 25 feet and after 25 years growth, it will reach a height of 50 feet. It prefers marine influences, but will do well inland on not-too-dry slopes. It is peerless as a large specimen in parks and it can also serve as a magnificent year-around cover for the small garden. Also, it may be sheared into an attractive hedge of 10 to 12 foot height. Common in valleys and on not-to-dry slopes, below 3000 feet. Seeds will not germinate in areas of compact soil. It has a problem with oak moth larvae and is susceptible to root rot if the soil level surrounding the trunk is either raised or lowered.  It has greedy roots and will drop almost all of its old leaves in the early spring.

Quercus chrysolepis, Canyon Live Oak: an evergreen that with age, can reach over 60 feet tall. It's crown is roundish or spreading.  The bark is pale gray and is rather smooth-scaly. Most leaves are smooth (entire) but younger leaves are spiny and look like a holly leaf. Used as slow-growing ornamental even in medium-sized yards. Drought tolerant. It looks good with Rhamnus californica, Coffeeberry and Heteromeles arbutifolia, Toyon. Common in canyons and on moist slopes, below 6500 feet.

Quercus dumosa, Scrub Oak: a small oak (mostly a shrub, but sometimes tree-like), which grows to a height of about 10 feet. It has angular branches and large acorns. In nature, it is common on dry slopes, mostly below 5000 feet. This evergreen is useful on slopes for erosion control and in a wild garden, but otherwise, it is seldom used as an ornamental. This hardwood will thrive in poor, rocky soil. Very drought tolerant.

Quercus kelloggii, California Black Oak: a deciduous oak with a broad, rounded crown, which can grow to a height of from 30 to 75 feet. The trunk is thick with dark smooth bark, which becomes deeply ridged with age. The dark color of the bark gives this oak its name. The unfolding leaves are a soft pink or dusty rose, becoming a glossy green, and finally, yellow or yellow-orange in the fall. These leaves have bristly tips. Spectacular color change of the leaves will occur after a cold spell in the fall or winter, resulting in a  golden color. The flowers of this oak occur in April and May and are known as catkins, which are dangling clusters of unisexual flowers. It has large, edible acorns, which mature during the second year. Grown primarily for spring and fall color, and for winter trunk and branch pattern. Works well in a landscape either singly or with other oaks in a forest setting. Drought tolerant. Common in hills and mountains, mostly 1000 to 8000 feet. At higher elevations, this tree may be shrubby.

Quercus lobata, Valley Oak: a stately graceful deciduous tree with an open head, which is between 40 and 100 feet tall. The trunk may reach 12 feet in diameter. The bark is light colored, thick, and checkered. It has deeply lobed leaves, which are shiny above and paler beneath, with a toothed apex. Each lobe is not bristly, which makes it distinguishable from the Quercus kelloggii. Like other oaks, this tree has an acorn which served as an important food source for early inhabitants; acorns mature during the first autumn. Rich loam, valleys and slopes, below 2000 feet. The city of Thousand Oaks was named after this tree. Associated with the Chaparral Plant community.

Quercus turbinella, Turbinella Oak: this oak is closely related to Quercus dumosa;  it grows to a height of about 15 feet. The acorn is edible. In nature, it is common on dry slopes, mostly from 3000 to 6500 feet. This evergreen is useful for slope cover or screen, as it is drought tolerant. In fact, this plant can survive on almost no water. It is good for erosion control.

Quercus wislizenii, Interior Live Oak: an evergreen tree with a rounded top, mostly between 30 and 75 feet tall. Bark is smooth, but becomes broadly ridged near it's base in old age. Leaves are shiny green and may be toothed. Acorns mature during the second year. Valleys and slopes, below 5000 feet.

Salix gooddingii, Willow: an erect shrub or small tree, which is between 6 and 30 feet tall and has rough dark bark. It's leaves are deciduous, dark green, and linear. Leaves appear in early spring and will remain until late in the season (until Christmas in milder climates). It flowers in March and April with tiny blooms in the form of catkins. It will tolerate any soil type and can survive under poor conditions of drainage. It's roots are invasive, making it difficult to garden under this tree. Principally grown for use as a screen plant or for erosion control on stream or river banks. A very fast grower which is excellent for behind a pond or along a stream. Allow room for it to spread. It is common in streambeds and other wet places, mostly below 2000 feet. It is subject to tent caterpillars, aphids, borers, and spider mites. It does best in an area with pronounced winters.

Salix hindsiana, Marsh Willow: an erect shrub or small tree, which is between 6 and 25 feet tall and has gray, furrowed bark. It's leaves are deciduous, green, and linear. It flowers from March through May with tiny blooms in the form of catkins. It will tolerate any soil type and can survive under poor conditions of drainage. It's roots are invasive, making it difficult to garden under this tree. Principally grown for use as a screen plant or for erosion control on stream or river banks. A very fast grower which is excellent for behind a pond or along a stream: allow room for it to spread. It is subject to tent caterpillars, aphids, borers, and spider mites. It is common locally along ditches, on sandbars, and other wet places, below 3000 feet. It does best in an area with pronounced winters.

Salix lasiolepis, Arroyo Willow: an erect shrub or small tree, which is between 6 and 30 feet tall. This evergreen has smooth bark. The leaves are dark green above and lighter beneath. It flowers from February through April with tiny blooms in the form of catkins; flowering generally occurs before the leaves reappear. Principally grown for use as a screen plant or for erosion control on stream or river banks. It can be used as a small tree, a hedge, or a background planting. It is good near water. It will tolerate any soil type and can survive under poor conditions of drainage. It's roots are invasive, making it difficult to garden under this tree. A very fast grower which is excellent for behind a pond or along a stream. Allow room for it to spread. It is subject to tent caterpillars, aphids, borers, and spider mites. Common on stream banks and beds, below 7000 feet. It does best in an area with pronounced winters.

Sambucus cerulea, Blue Elderberry: a large shrub or small tree which is deciduous. It will reach a height between 6 and 30 feet and will have a rounded appearance. Nicely shaped specimens look great with leaves, but will look scrawny in the winter when leafless. The leaves are pinnately compound and green. It blooms from June to September with small white flowers, which are attractive. The edible berries are very small, frosted, and nearly black: they are often used in jams, jellies, pies, and wine. Also, birds are attracted to the fruit. Note: the species of Elderberry which produces a red fruit has poisonous berries. This tree is a good background plant in natural gardens. In a large garden, it can be effective as a screen or windbreak. During the dormant season, prune it hard to ensure denseness. Also, new growth will sprout readily from the stump. It thrives in sun or shade, and in damp or dry conditions. It will take wet conditions with good drainage. Open places, up to 10,000 feet. This plant is poisonous.

Sambucus mexicana, Elderberry: a large shrub or small tree which is deciduous. It will reach a height between 6 and 30 feet and will have a rounded appearance. Nicely shaped specimens look great with leaves, but will look scrawny in the winter when leafless. The leaves are pinnately compound and green. It blooms from March to September with small white flowers, which are attractive. The edible berries are very small and either blue or white, with a frosted appearance: they are often used in jams, jellies, pies, and wine. Also, birds are attracted to the fruit. Note: the species of Elderberry which produces a red fruit has poisonous berries. Open flats and cismontane valleys and canyons, below 4500 feet. This tree is a good background plant in natural gardens. In a large garden, it can be effective as a screen or windbreak. During the dormant season, prune it hard to ensure denseness. Also, new growth will sprout readily from the stump. It thrives in sun or shade, and in damp or dry conditions. It will take wet conditions with good drainage. This plant is poisonous.

Sequoia sempervirens, Coast Redwood: this tall evergreen tree will require lots of room as it can reach a height of from 150 to 300 feet or more (unfortunately, not in one persons lifetime). The trunk is strongly buttressed at the base, slightly tapering upward. The bark is red, spongy-fibrous, and deeply ridged. Leaves are dark green and up to 1 inch in length. Cones are red-brown and up to 1-1/2 inches long. Flats and slopes, mostly below 2000 feet and in the coastal fog belt. Wood is reddish, light, soft, and easily split, making it very important for lumber. Also, the wood resists decay. This tree will often attain an age of 1500 years. It is used in parks and homes with large lots.

Tamarix aphylla, Tamarisk or Athel: a tree, which grows from 20 to 50 feet tall. Greenish,  jointed  branches give this deciduous tree an evergreen appearance. In late summer, it becomes grayish in saline soils, due to secretions of salt. Small leaves are thickish and scalelike. Small flowers are pinkish-white and appear from May through July. In the California deserts, it has no equal in resistance to wind and drought. It tolerates saline soils which are toxic to other plants. It is fire retardant if reasonably well watered. It develops a long tap root; consequently, it cannot be left in a container for too long. Heavy damage will occur if exposed to 0 o F temperatures; fortunately, it will come back rapidly. Fast growing from planted cuttings: 10 feet or more in 3 years and by 15 years, it may reach it's full height with a deep soil and water. It is not a good choice for a highly cultivated garden because it's roots are too competitive. This tree is associated withChilopsis linearis. It is actually a native to Asia and Africa which was introduced to the California desert by early settlers as a shade tree and a windbreak.

Ulmus americana, American Elm: a native to Europe.

Umbellularia californica, California Bay or Oregon Myrtle: a large evergreen, with a broad crown, which can reach a height of 15 to 100 feet. In dry environments, this tree may remain as an erect shrub. It is easily identified by its pungent odor: a little of the crushed fragrance is pleasant, but too much can cause a headache. Bark is greenish to reddish-brown. Leaves are thick and lance-shaped, often reaching a length of 5 inches: they are useful in cooking as a more potent substitute for true bay leaves (i. e., Laurus nobilis ). Flowers are yellow-green and occur from December to May. Inedible fruit is greenish, becoming dark purple when ripe. It is found in moist areas of canyons, between 2000 and 6000 feet. It is commonly used as an ornamental, serving as a screen, a background planting, or a tall hedge. It will grow on a slope. Also, it is a good patio or street tree when thinned to one or a few trunks. It will grow in deep shade and will eventually become large enough to serve as a shade tree itself; it casts a very dense shade unless thinned. In the garden, it tends to grow slowly, about 1 foot per year. For best and fastest growth, plant in a deep soil with ample water; however, it will tolerate many other conditions, including drought. The wood is hard, strong, and takes a polish.

Washingtonia filifera, California Fan Palm: a columnar tree, which is from 30 to 80 feet high. The unbranched trunk is up to 3 feet thick and is commonly clothed with a dense thatch of dead, drooping leaves, which may be burned away. The large leaves are gray-green, heavy, and fibrous, with numerous folds. Flowers are whitish and appear in June. This is the only native fan palm in the Western United States and it is the largest of the true desert palms. It can survive in fresh and alkaline water areas where the water table is high. Tolerant of desert heat and some drought, but will thrive with moisture in a well drained soil. Hardy to around 18 o F. Young trees can be used in containers. It serves well as a street or parkway planting, in groves, or in large gardens, either singly or grouped. Found in groves in moist alkaline spots about seeps, springs, and streams, below 3000 feet.
 

Cacti and Succulents:

Agave deserti, Agave: a densely clumped, stemless perennial, which arises from an underground trunk to form large colonies. It has thick, succulent leaves, which are triangular and tipped with a dark, terminal spine. Also, each leaf has straight or curved pale prickles which line both margins. In the spring, some of the older plants in a colony will send up 10 foot, asparagus-like stems, which terminate in short, branched clusters of yellow blooms; these blooms occur from May through July and are especially attractive. After flowering, the foliage clump dies, leaving behind suckers which grow into new plants. Drought tolerant; this succulent will shrivel from serious drought, but will plump up again when watered or rained on. Fire resistant. Washes and dry, rocky slopes, below 5000 feet.

Agave shawii, Shaw's Agave: a large fleshy succulent with a short trunk clothed with old leaves. The leaves are up to 20 inches long, glossy green, and edged with large red prickles.It blooms from December to March with numerous greenish-yellow flowers, each filled with a sweetish nectar. After flowering, the old plant dies, but is replaced by numerous suckers, which appear around the base of the old clump. This succulent is one of the finest native to California and it's use is highly recommended. It is most useful for covering sunny banks and slopes, because it spreads and within a few years, will form large clumps. Because of the sharp spines on the leaves, this plant should not be placed where small children can get hurt by them. Propagate by seeds, which will germinate readily, or by removing the suckers from the base of older plants.

Agave utahensis  var. nevadensis, Century Plant or Maguey: a stemless perennial, arising from an underground trunk and is often clumped. The leaves curve inward at the tips, are from 4 to 10 inches long, and have 8 to 10 white teeth along each margin. The leaf is also armed with a slender terminal spine, so place this succulent carefully in the garden. The flowers are yellow and appear from May through July. Dry, stony limestone slopes, below 3000 to 5000 feet.

Carpobrotus edulis, Common Ice Plant or Hottentot-Fig: also known as Mesembryanthemum edule, this is the large ice plant which is familiar to most people. Once used as a slope cover, it is no longer recommended for steep slopes, as it tends to pull these down. It flowers usually in late spring and summer with yellow flowers, which sometimes vary to a rose-purple. It's fruit is edible. This succulent tolerates salty soils very well.

Dudleya arizonica, Live-forever: this dudleya is a small perennial with succulent, tapered leaves, arranged in the form of a rosette. It blooms from May to July with brick-red flowers. It grows best in full sun or light shade inland.  This desert species is usually found on dry slopes, from 2000 to 4000 feet. It serves as a great drought-tolerant groundcover and is ideal for succulent or rock gardens. It is also at home on a rock wall (either on it's top or on it's face) and it does well as a potted specimen in a well-drained potting soil, which is top dressed with pebbles. Water in the summer for best appearances.

Dudleya edulis, Lady-Fingers or Live-forever: this dudleya has pale green, finger-like leaves, arranged in the form of a rosette. It blooms from May to June with cream-white flowers. It grows best in full sun or light shade inland. Grows on rocky hillsides below 3500 feet. It serves as a great drought-tolerant groundcover and is ideal for succulent or rock gardens. It is also at home on a rock wall (either on it's top or on it's face) and it does well as a potted specimen in a well-drained potting soil, which is top dressed with pebbles. Water in the summer for best appearances.

Dudleya lanceolata, Lance-leaf Dudleya or Live-forever: this dudleya has grayish-green leaves, arranged in the form of a rosette. It blooms from May to July with orange or pale green (with a red tinge)  flowers. It grows best in full sun or light shade inland. Common on dry stony slopes or banks below 3500 feet. It serves as a great drought-tolerant groundcover and is ideal for succulent or rock gardens. It is also at home on a rock wall (either on it's top or on it's face) and it does well as a potted specimen in a well-drained potting soil, which is top dressed with pebbles. Water in the summer for best appearances. The name implies that this plant does not die after flowering. Young plants are usually green but will turn gray or white with age.

Dudleya pulverulenta, Chalk Dudleya: this plant is completely covered with a mealy white powder. Leaves are arranged in the form of a rosette and arise from a central caudex. Deep red flowers appear from May to July. Rocky cliffs and canyons, mostly below 3000 feet. It prefers full sun and is very drought resistant. It is useful in containers, rock gardens, and for a low border. It is also at home on a rock wall (either on it's top or on it's face). This plant does not die after flowering.

Dudleya saxosa, Live-forever: this dudleya has pale green leaves, arranged in the form of a rosette. It blooms from May to June with yellow flowers. It grows best in full sun or light shade inland. Dry rocky places between 800 and 5500 feet. It serves as a great drought-tolerant groundcover and is ideal for succulent or rock gardens. It is also at home on a rock wall (either on it's top or on it's face) and it does well as a potted specimen in a well-drained potting soil, which is top dressed with pebbles. Water in the summer for best appearances.

Dudleya virens, Live-forever: this dudleya has strap-shaped leaves, which taper from the base (or from near middle) and are mostly green. The leaves are arranged in the form of a rosette. Succulent to about 6 inches in height. It blooms in April, May, and June with white flowers. It grows best in full sun or light shade inland.  This coastal species is usually found on rocks and cliffs, below 1500 feet. It serves as an excellent drought-tolerant groundcover to replace common forms of iceplant and is ideal for succulent or rock gardens. It is also at home on a rock wall (either on it's top or on it's face) and it does well as a potted specimen in a well-drained potting soil, which is top dressed with pebbles. Water in the summer for best appearances.

Echinocactus acanthodes, Barrel Cactus: also known as Ferocactus acanthodes. This simple and erect cactus may stand up to 6 feet tall and is stout, ribbed, and cylindrical. It is covered with a red to white (sometimes pink or yellowish) spines, which may be hooked at its apex. Flowers are yellow and occur in April and May. Found on rocky slopes and walls or in gravelly fans, below 5000 feet. It produces a shiny, slimy alkaline juice, reputed as a thirst quencher, yet this juice, because of a flat bitter taste, is rarely drunk by travelers of the desert. Thirsty jack rabbits, mountain sheep, and wild burros occasionally eat the flesh. In especially hot locals, water every couple of weeks during the summer.

Echinocactus viridescens, Coast Barrel Cactus: also known as Ferocactus viridescens. This cactus may stand up to 1 foot tall in a protected location, but is usually buried below the ground with only its spiny crown showing. It rarely branches and is armed with stout brown spines. Flowers are usually yellow-green (sometimes orange) and occur in the early summer. Found on dry hills. It appears nice when planted in masses or in small clusters. In especially hot locals, water every couple of weeks during the summer.

Echinocereus engelmannii, Hedgehog Cactus or Calico Cactus: has one to a few cylindrical, erect stems, to 1 foot tall. These stems arise from a central basal point. Spines are red, yellow, white, brown, or gray, mostly not curved or twisted, and about 3 inches in length. Flowers are crimson-magenta to paler, and occur between April and May. Common on gravelly slopes and benches, below 7200 feet. It's fruit constitutes an important food source for many birds and rodents.

Echinocereus mojavensis, Mohave Mound Cactus: also known as Echinocereus triglochidiatus. This cactus grows up to 8 inches tall and occurs in dense clumps. It's stems are many, bulbous, and pale green, with many ribs. It's spines are white to gray, about 2 inches long, and curved. It's flowers are a dull scarlet, diurnal, solitary, and appear between April and June. Found on rocky slopes, between 3000 and 7000 feet.

Mammillaria alversonii, Foxtail Cactus: stems are one to a few, short-cylindrical, between 4 and 8 inches high. Spines are straight, stout, and purplish or dark with a white base; the plant surface is nearly concealed by the spines. Flowers appear in May and June, with a brilliant magenta. Easy to grow in the sun; however, provide ample water during the summer. Collectors usually grow this plant in containers. Stony slopes, between 2000 and 5000 feet.

Mammillaria deserti, Fishhook Cactus: a small cactus, to 8 inches tall. It's stems are mostly single, although can be a few from the base. Spines are whitish with red-brown tips and straight or shorter and gray (both types are always present). It blooms in April and May, with yellowish or amber flowers, tipped with pink. Easy to grow in the sun; however, provide ample water during the summer. Collectors usually grow this plant in containers. Found on dry stony slopes, between 1500 and 6000 feet.

Mammillaria dioica, Fishhook Cactus: a small cactus, with stems frequently branching from the base, which is from 2 to 10 inches tall. It has 1 to 4 brownish, hooked spines, surrounded by numerous smaller white spines, on each nipple. Flowers are creamy or yellowish with a purplish or pinkish mid-stripe and occur from February to April. The fruit is scarlet, finger-shaped, and is eaten by animals and man. Easy to grow in the sun; however, provide ample water during the summer. Collectors usually grow this plant in containers. Sandy locations, below 5000 feet.

Mammillaria tetrancistra, Fishhook Cactus: a small cactus with single oblong stems, from 4 to 10 inches tall. It has 1 to 4 purplish, central, hooked spines on each nipple. Flowers are white with a rose or lavender mid-stripe and occur in April. The fruit is strawberry red, finger-shaped, and is eaten by animals and man. Easy to grow in the sun; however, provide ample water during the summer. Collectors usually grow this plant in containers. Occasional on dry slopes, below 2000 feet.

Opuntia acanthocarpa, Buckhorn Cholla: this openly branched cactus is spreading to erect, with a short main trunk. It grows to a height of 6 feet and is wider than tall. Branches are cylindrical and light green. It is armed with stout, straw-colored spines. Flowers are red to yellow or greenish-yellow and occur from May to June. Once established, it will require little or no water. In nature, it grows on dry mesas and slopes, below 4500 feet.

Opuntia basilaris, Beaver Tail: a low spreading species with brilliant magenta flowers (rarely white), which occur between March and June. Flowers appear in clusters at the upper edge of the joints and often nearly cover this plant; this makes this cactus a popular ornamental for hot, dry climates.The cladophyll pad is bluish-green with cushions of very short, yellowish-brown spicules set in depressions. Stems are low and spreading, with branching at the base of their flattened joints. Once established, it will require little or no water. Frequent on dry benches and fans below 6000 feet. Cahuilla Indians eat  the fruit with cooked meat. Fruit is known as 'Tuna' in the Southwest. This plant is sensitive to cottony cochineal scales. Propagate by breaking off a joint which can be quickly rooted in dry sand.

Opuntia chlorotica, Pancake-Pear: an erect, tree-like succulent, which grows up to a height of 7 feet and which is almost as broad as tall. It has a stout trunk, with ascending branches. It's joints are circular, yellow-green, and flat (like a pancake). It's spines are yellow,  up to 2 inches in length, and downward pointing. It blooms in May and June with yellow flowers. Once established, it will require little or no water. Usually found on dry rocky walls, between 3000 and 5500 feet. It serves best as a specimen plant in a desert or rock garden.

Opuntia echinocarpa, Silver Cholla or Golden Cholla: an erect, intricately-branched cholla, with a short woody trunk and a dense crown of cylindrical branches. It grows up to 5 feet tall. Joints are detachable and armed with silvery or golden spines. Flowers appear in clusters at the ends of branches in April and May, with greenish-yellow petals (the outer petals are sometimes streaked with red). Once established, it will require little or no water. It occurs in dry washes and mesas, below 6000 feet.

Opuntia echinocarpa  var. wolfii, Wolf Cholla: an erect, intricately-branched cholla, with a short woody trunk and a dense crown of cylindrical branches. It grows up to 5 feet tall. Joints are detachable and armed with dull white spines. Flowers appear in clusters at the ends of branches in April and May, with greenish-yellow petals (the outer petals are sometimes streaked with red). Once established, it will require little or no water. It occurs in dry washes and mesas, below 6000 feet.

Opuntia ficus-indica, Indian Fig: a tree-like cactus, which grows up to 15 feet tall. It's spines are white, if present. It blooms in May or June with yellow to reddish flowers; fruits are purple, edible, and often sold in markets. Once established, it will require little or no water. Handle this cactus carefully, as the bristles break off easily and are irritating. Cultivated in California; native to tropical America. Use as a specimen plant in a rock garden or desert setting.

Opuntia littoralis, Coast Prickly Pear: on the coast, this erect or spreading cactus grows 6 to 9 feet broad. It is armed with yellow spines. It blooms in June with yellow flowers. The fruit is edible. Found on dry bluffs and slopes near the coast. Use as a specimen plant in a rock garden or desert setting. Once established, it requires little or no water.

Opuntia prolifera, Mesa Cholla: while there are some of these cacti scattered throughout the reserve, they are best represented in the garden by the lodge. An erect cactus with 1 to several trunks. It is 3 to 6 feet tall, with a greater width due to it's spreading branches. The stems easily detach at the joints. It flowers in late spring, with light rose-red to red-purple blooms. Once established, it will require little or no water. It forms vegetatively propagated thickets on arid slopes below 600 feet; found near and along the coast.

Opuntia ramosissima, Pencil Cholla: a freely branched, erect succulent to 5 feet in height. It is bushy, with grayish cylindrical branches containing a solid woody core. It is spiny to almost spineless, with solitary yellow spines. Flowers are yellow-green, tinged red, and occur in April and May. Once established, it will require little or no water. It grows on dry washes, slopes, and mesas, below 4000 feet.

Yucca brevifolia, Joshua Tree: this evergreen will grow to a height of 40 feet. It has a stout trunk which is  red-brown to gray. Usually, each plant has a straight trunk for the first 4 feet before branching occurs; new branches occur after each flowering. Leaf blades are about 1 foot in length, rigid, and lack a fibrous margin. Old dead leaves will persist for a long time unless removed manually. Care must be taken with locating this tree in the garden, as each leaf is tipped with an sharp apical spine: keep it away from walks, terraces, and other traveled areas. Flowers are  waxy, large, and cream to greenish-white; they are in many branched clusters and occur after spring rains (April and May). Flowering will only occur in years with adequate rainfall and temperatures. In nature, this tree occurs on dry slopes and mesas, between 2000 and 6000 feet. It grows best in a dry, well drained soil such as found in a desert garden; it grows with difficulty under average garden conditions. This plant will act as a fire retardant if reasonably well watered.

Yucca schidigera, Mojave Yucca: this evergreen succulent has dagger-like leaves with attached fibers. It's trunk can be simple or branched, growing to 12 feet tall. In the summer, it blooms with white or green-white flowers in branched clusters. It's fruit, which ripens in midsummer, was utilized widely by the Indians. It is recommended for large gardens or dry banks and hillsides. A drought tolerant specimen for rock or desert garden. Water is required only in the first year; after this, it should grow without special care. Avoid overhead irrigation since this encourages crown rot. Plant in a well-drained coarse soil. It's roots were once used to make soap, it's leaf tips and fibers for sewing, and it's flowers were eaten. Propagate by seeds. It has an extensive range;  in nature, it grows on dry rocky slopes below 7800 feet. This plant will act as a fire retardant if reasonably well watered.

Yucca whipplei, Our Lords Candle: this specimen plant is stemless, with it's leaves arising from the base. The leaves are gray-green and 1 to 2 feet long. The flowering stalk grows to be 8 feet tall and appears after about 15 years. This Yucca is very fragrant. It blooms from April through July, with white pendant flowers, often tinged with purple. The whole plant will die after flowering. This plant is easy to transplant. It is common to both the Coastal Scrub and the Chaparral plant communities. The Indians used the flowering leaves for baskets. Found in nature on dry, often stony slopes below 4000 feet. It will grow best in full sun and in most well-drained soils. It requires little summer irrigation. A dramatic plant for a rocky slope, a rock garden, or a desert garden. It also grows well in large tubs. However, keep it away from paths because its leaf-tips are sharp. Propagate by seeds or by offshoots. This plant will act as a fire retardant if reasonably well watered.

Yucca whipplei var. caepitosa, Our Lords Candle: this specimen plant is stemless, with it's leaves arising from the base. The leaves are gray-green and 1 to 2 feet long. The flowering stalk grows to be 8 feet tall and appears after about 15 years. This Yucca is very fragrant. It blooms in May and June, with white pendant flowers, often tinged with purple. The whole plant will die after flowering. The Indians used the flowering leaves for baskets. Found in desert regions on dry slopes, mostly between 2000 and 4000 feet. It will grow best in full sun and in most well-drained soils. It requires little summer irrigation. A dramatic plant for a rocky slope, a rock garden, or a desert garden. It also grows well in large tubs. However, keep it away from paths because its leaf-tips are sharp. Propagate by seeds or by offshoots. This plant will act as a fire retardant if reasonably well watered.
 

Shrubs:

Acacia gregii, Cat's Claw: a spreading, straggling, deciduous shrub, which may reach 6 feet in height (sometimes arborescent and taller). Branches are armed with short, stout, curved spines. Leaves are pinnately compound. Flowers occur between April and June, in cylindrical, yellow spikes and are followed by legume seed pods. This shrub is attractive to birds. It is short lived--20 to 30 years. Easily grown from seed. It is commonly found in washes and canyons below 6000 feet. Because of it's spines, keep it away from walks and other traveled areas.

Adenostoma fasciculatum, Chamise or Greasewood: an unarmed evergreen shrub, with resinous herbage. It has a well developed basal burl. It's bark is reddish and becomes shreddy with age. It will reach between 2 and 10 feet tall. Leaves are small, linear, rigid, and dark green. Small white flowers appear in May and June. A common dominant on dry slopes and ridges, below 5000 feet. Being wind and drought tolerant, it will thrive under a variety of conditions. It is recommended for large native gardens where it can be effectively used as a tall  background plant. The foliage is pleasantly fragrant, especially after a rain. Consider planting it with Rhus ovata, Sugar Bush: the substantial appearance of Sugar Bush with it's wide leathery leaves will contrast nicely with the fine leaved Chamise. This shrub represents a fire hazard, so water it occasionally in the summer and keep it clean of debris.

Amelanchier utahensis, Serviceberry: a deciduous, much-branched shrub, which is 3 to 15 feet tall and usually found near water. Bark is ashy-gray. Leaves are oval, toothed, and grayish-green. Small white flowers appear in April and May and are followed by a small edible fruit, which is purplish-black to brownish. Somewhat similar in appearance to Mountain Mahogany. Dry slopes, 5000 to 7000 feet.

Ambrosia dumosa, Burro-weed or Bur-sage: also known as Franseria dumosa. This plant is commonly associated with Creosote Bush. It is a low, rounded, white-barked shrub. It is intricately branched and reaches a height of about 2 feet. It's foliage is ashy white most of the year, becoming green only in the spring. It is abundant on well drained soils throughout California, mostly up to 3500 feet. It flowers from both February to June and September to November. Because it is a member of the Asteraceae (the Sunflower Family), it's windborne pollen is a common cause of hay fever.

Arctostaphylos spp., Manzanitas: observe tree, shrub, and groundcover forms of these drought tolerant, evergreens.

Arctostaphylos glandulosa, Eastwood Manzanita: this erect, spreading, densely branched shrub grows to 8 feet tall (15 feet). It arises from an enlarged woody base (or burl)  with crooked, smooth, and reddish stems. The beautiful red bark sheds persistently and is often used for furniture, especially lamps. Its evergreen leaves are a dull green. It blooms with white, lantern-like flowers from January to April. It grows on dry, gravelly to rocky, slopes and ridges, from 1000 to 6000 feet. It is drought tolerant, requiring only occasional water, once established. Use as an accent plant or as a background. This plant is a slow grower. There are many other forms of Manzanita available to fill any role from tree to groundcover. Propagate from seeds or cuttings. It is a good partner with Toyon or Chamise on a sunny hillside.

Arctostaphylos glauca, Bigberry Manzanita: this large erect shrub grows to 12 feet tall and may be either shrubby or arborescent. It has smooth, red-brown bark which sheds persistently. Its evergreen leaves are a dull green. During the dry season, it may lose most of it's leaves; however, the colors of this shrub make it interesting year around. This plant grows best in a well drained soil and in full sun; it will appear feeble in heavy shade. It is slow growing. It is drought tolerant, requiring only occasional water, once established. Use as an accent plant or as a background. It blooms with white or pinkish flowers from December to March. During fruiting, it will attract birds. It is common on dry slopes, below 4500 feet. Propagate from seeds or cuttings. It is a good partner with Toyon or Chamise on a sunny hillside.

Artemisia californica, California Sagebrush: a grayish shrub, which is mostly 1 to 4 feet tall and usually broader than tall. It's flowers are not showy. Do not water this shrub frequently and plant it in full sun--shade makes it lax and less gray in color. Common on dry slopes and fans below 2500 feet. It does well along coastal areas, but not in the hot interior valleys. It is recommended for a border planting or in any sunny location. Also, it is useful in a mixed border where it's gray leaves will soften harsh reds or oranges and will blend beautifully with blues, lavenders, and pinks. It should not be pruned, but it can be maintained as a low clump by removing the flowering stems when these appear. It becomes more or less unattractive with age, so replace it every couple of years. Propagate by seeds or by division during the spring or fall. It has a strong mint-like aroma. It has been said that this plant was extensively used by the early Spanish settlers as a cure for most common ills. This plant is not a true sage.

Atriplex hymenelytra, Desert Holly: a compact, evergreen shrub, which is from 1 to 3 feet tall. Form is low and round. Branches are whitish. Leaves are silvery and deeply toothed--a white version of the holly leaf; they are popularly used as a decoration. Must be planted in a soil with very fast drainage. Flowers are small and green with male and female flowers are on separate plants. Water heavily only during the blooming period, which is January through May. It will tolerate some summer water if drainage is very fast. Tends to be short lived. It tolerates highly alkaline desert soils; in fact, it grows in any soil except heavy clay. Grown primarily for silvery foliage. Flowers and seeds attract birds. Fire resistant and drought tolerant. Also, an erosion control plant. Propagate by seeds. Dry, alkaline slopes and washes.

Baccharis emoryi, Emory's Broom: an erect loosely-branched shrub, from 3 to 9 feet tall, with tough stems. Found mostly along streams at low elevations. A good shrub for slopes or a border planting. Once established, it requires on summer water.

Baccharis glutinosa, Mule-Fat: a woody shrub growing between 6 and 12 feet in height. It has willow-like stems. It's green leaves are somewhat toothed along the margin. It has a white flower and it blooms mostly between March and July, but some plants may flower all year. Found in dry streambeds, ditch banks, ponds, etc., mostly below 2500 feet. This  species is useful in preventing erosion. As it will need a great deal of water, it is recommended for use along a stream or by a pond. As the name implies, this plant is a favorite of browsing livestock. The name Baccharis  refers to 'sweet smelling roots.'

Baccharis pilularis, Coyote Bush: much-branched erect shrub (occasionally prostrate), from 3 to 12 feet tall. Common on hillsides and in canyons below 2000 feet. (Prostrate form found on windswept dunes and headlands along the coast, low elevations). It is wind resistant and will tolerate both drought and irrigation in full sun. Propagate by seeds or cuttings. The dwarf form is ideal for a ground cover, as it will briskly spread over 6 feet to form a 2 foot tall carpet, which effectively discourages weeds. A good shrub for slopes or a border planting and once established, it requires no summer water.

Baccharis pilularis, Dwarf Coyote Bush: a useful groundcover for a slope or a level area. it takes full sun and seacoast exposure. Not especially attractive, but quite useful. Very drought tolerant.

Beleperone californica, Chuparosa: a low, rounded shrub with spreading, often leafless branches; branches are from 1 to 5 feet long and often arched. Leaves are heart-shaped and deciduous; in the summer, it's leaves turn yellow and fall off, leaving the stems almost bare. It blooms from February to June with a dull scarlet flower, which put on a good show; in cultivation, some plants may flower all year. Best if planted in a well-drained soil and in a sunny location. Very drought tolerant, but will respond well to some summer water. Prune severely each year to produce a well-rounded shrub which will bloom freely. Not widely used as a ornamental; however, it responds well to cultivation. Because of it's early spring blooming habit, it can be used to advantage in native gardens located in warmer areas. Often freezes to the ground in winter, but grows back quickly in the spring. Propagate by readily-germinating seeds. It is common along the borders of sandy washes and rocky areas on the western edge of the Colorado Desert, below 2500 feet.

Berberis spp., Barberry: an excellent evergreen plant which may replace the Oregon Grape. This plant flowers in the spring with yellow blooms which are followed by purple grape-like berries in the summer. It has sharp leaf margins which make it an ideal screen or barrier. to 8 feet.

Calliandra eriophylla, Fairy Duster: a showy shrub, which is from 1 to 3 feet high and spreading to 4 or 5 feet. Branches are dense and unarmed. Leaves are finely divided into tiny, slender leaflets. Flowers are rose to reddish-purple and resemble a feather duster, due to the numerous, exerted stamens; blooming occurs in February and March. The fruit is a 2 to 3 inch long legume with dark red margins. A very drought tolerant shrub which needs sun and warmth. Sandy washes and gullies, below 1000 feet.

Ceanothus spp., Ceanothus or California Lilac: evergreen species with many forms. They can flower in spring with white, pink, blue, or purple shades. Some forms do not transplant well and some few need rainwater exclusively.

Ceanothus palmeri, Palmer Ceanothus or California Lilac: a spreading, evergreen shrub or tree, from 3 to 15 feet tall. The bark is gray-green and distinguishes this species. Leaves are light green above and pale beneath. It blooms in May and June with white or pale pink flowers, located in clusters at branch ends. Other forms have pink, red, or blue flowers. Dry slopes, between 3200 and 6000 feet. It looks better under cultivation than at Mount Palomar.

Ceanothus verrucosus, Warty-Stemmed Ceanothus: this erect, stiff-branched, evergreen shrub will grow to heights of 9 feet and may even reach 12 to 15 feet. It's foliage is small and dark green. It's stem is warty. Unlike other members of this family, this plant has small white flowers which are quite showy (often an amazing display, which resembles a giant snowball). However, the flowers sometimes are blue. It blooms from January to April. It grows naturally on dry hills and mesas. It is definitely a specimen plant.

Cercocarpus ledifolius, Mountain Mahogany: this evergreen shrub or tree has a red-brown furrowed bark and will reach from 6 to 30 feet in height. It's small leaves are green above and light green or tan beneath. Flowers are not showy; however, it produces seeds, each of which has a 3 inch 'tail' (a pink thread) spiraling from it like a corkscrew, which is quite attractive. Dry, rocky slopes, 4000 to 10,500 feet.

Cneoridium dumosum, Spicebush or Bushrue: a small evergreen shrub with grayish bark, which grows to about 2 to 3 feet in height on the coast. It has light lime-green foliage with white flowers, followed by small pea-sized berries of varying colors. It has a strong orange scent and it's leaves can cause a rash. Frequent on mesas and bluffs, below 2500 feet. It is a good plant for color contrast on slopes.

Coleogyne ramosissima, Blackbrush: an intricately branched shrub with spiny branches, growing to 6 feet tall and ashy-gray in coloration. It's leaves are deciduous. Flowers are solitary and lack a petal. It blooms from April to June. Found on dry slopes, below 5000 feet. It can grow in alkaline soils. Not often used in the garden.

Dalea schottii, Indigo Bush: an intricately branched shrub, armed with small spines, which is from 3 to 9 feet tall. Young growth is bright green, but will gray with age. Compound leaves are simple and linear. Small, pea-like flowers are blue and appear from March through May. Fruit are small pods. Washes and benches, below 1000 feet. Not often used in the garden.

Dendromecon rigida, Bush Poppy: an openly branched, stiff, and rounded shrub, which is from 3 to 10 feet tall. The main stems have a grayish or whitish bark, which is shredding. Leaves are grayish green, thick, and veiny. Flowers are solitary, 2 inches wide, and yellow, with the typical poppy appearance; they occur mostly from April through June, but may be observed at other times as well. During the season, the flowers are quite showy; however, prune this shrub back to 2 feet after flowering to maintain shape. It has an untidy appearance in the wild. Rather common on dry slopes and in stony washes, below 6000 feet. Use it on banks and roadsides with other native shrubs. It is sun loving and will thrive in dry, well drained soils.

Encelia farinosa, Brittlebush, Incienso, or Encelia: is a common, low, rounded bush, growing to 4 feet. It's herbage is fragrant, with brittle stems arising from a woody trunk. It produces leaves in a dense cluster, which are a whitish-gray. It needs occasional summer water; otherwise, it will drop it's leaves. It's flower is the bright orange-yellow color typical of a member of the Asteraceae (the Sunflower family). Blooms occur from March to May. This bush is intolerant of hard frosts. It does best in full sun, especially near the coast, and in a soil with good drainage. Found on dry, stony slopes, up to 3000 feet. It's bushy form makes it good at the back of a border or in coastal rock gardens. The plant's yellow sap was used by early missionaries as an incense. Propagate by seeds.

Ephedra nevadensis, Mormon Tea or Nevada Joint Fir: a spreading to erect, broomlike shrub, which may reach 4 feet in height. Young stems are a pale green and smooth; older stems become yellow or gray. Leaves are tiny and deciduous. This plant does not produce flowers; it produces tiny cones (somewhat like a pine tree). It is common on dry slopes and hills, mostly below 4500 feet. There are seven different species of Ephedra  in California.

Eriodictyon crassifolium, Yerba Santa: an aromatic, evergreen shrub, which will grow to about 9 feet tall. Stems are reddish in color. It has furry light gray-green foliage and beautiful blue flowers in late spring. In nature, it occurs in dry gravelly or rocky places below 6000 feet. Keep pruned to thicken growth. Requires no summer water. It is useful to cover dry banks and foliage serves as an excellent contrast with other shrubs. Indians in this area used to make a tea from this plant, which was used to cure headaches and stomach aches; it was also dried and used for tobacco. Note: this Genus contains several species with the common name of Yerba Santa.

Eriogonum fasiculatum, California Buckwheat: a low, spreading shrub, with branched, leafy stems, which are plus or minus decumbent and are to 3 feet long. Flowers are white to pinkish, which fade to rusty brown and appear from May to October. The flower is popularly used in floral arrangements. Found on dry slopes and canyons near the immediate coast; other subspecies are found throughout the west. It is quite common to the hills of the Chaparral Plant Community; consequently, it is excellent in front of Chaparral shrubs in a garden and is a great groundcover. It is a good erosion control plant. Also, it is useful to cover dry banks, to mass among rocks, or in rock gardens. It does best in full sun and will withstand wind and heat well. It thrives in a well-drained, loose, and gravelly soil. Once established, this drought-tolerant shrub requires little water; none near the coast. The latin word fasciculatum translates to mean 'bundles;' this describes the growth habits of both the leaves and flowers. This shrub is a favorite of bees.

Eriogonum fasiculatum ssp. polifolium, California Buckwheat: a low, spreading shrub, with branched, leafy stems, which are plus or minus decumbent and up to 1 foot long. Flowers are white to pinkish, fading to a rusty brown and appear from April to November. Common on dry slopes below 7000 feet; other subspecies are found throughout the west. It is a great groundcover and a good erosion control plant. Also, it is useful to cover dry banks, to mass among rocks, or in rock gardens. It does best in full sun and will withstand wind and heat well. It thrives in a well-drained, loose, and gravelly soil. Once established, this drought-tolerant shrub requires little water. This shrub is a favorite of bees.

Euonymus occidentalis, Western Burning Bush: a deciduous shrub, which can be arborescent and which grows from 6 to 20 feet tall. Branches are slender and often straggling. It has light-green leaves which are often tinged red or golden. Flowers are a brown-purple and occur from April to June. Occasional in damp, wooded banks and canyons, between 4500 and 6500 feet.

Fouquieria splendens, Ocotillo:  a resinous, spiny shrub, with stout, erect stems, which are from 6 to 25 feet long. Stems are several to many and arise from a common base; also, each stem is gray with darker furrows and is armed with stout spines. Leaves are fleshy and soon deciduous with dry weather, but will reappear with both spring and late summer rains. Tubular flowers appear between March and July with scarlet blooms in attractive, foot-long clusters. Use as a screening, impenetrable hedge or for a silhouette against a bare wall. Requires plenty of drainage and full sun. Do not overwater. Cuttings placed in the ground will grow. Dry, mostly rocky places, below 2500 feet.

Fremontodendron californica, Fremontia or Flannel Bush:  also known as Fremontia californica. An open, spreading shrub, which is from 5 to 25 feet tall. Leaves are a dull green and evergreen, although it will drop many of them during the dry season. Flowers are in great showy masses and tend to bloom out at one time, mostly in May or June. Flowers actually lack petals, but have a clear yellow calyx. Dry, mostly granitic slopes, from 3000 to 6000 feet.

Garreya elliptica, Silk Tassle: a

Haplopappus cuneatus, Wedge-leaf Goldenbush: a deep green, spreading  shrub which grows up to 2 feet tall. It is much-branched. This evergreen grows in clumps usually from rocks. Beautiful display of yellow flowers from September to November. Frequent in crevices of granite rocks on cliffs and slopes, between 2500 to 9000 feet. Excellent for use in a rock garden.

Haplopappus linearifolius, Narrow-leaf Goldenbush: a much-branched shrub to 5 feet. This evergreen is found on the ground and has narrow green foliage. Beautiful display of yellow flowers from March to May. Arid slopes and banks, rocky or sandy soils, mostly below 6000 feet.

Heteromeles arbutifolia, Toyon, California Christmas Berry: usually a shrub, but sometimes it will grow into a 20 foot tall, multitrunked tree. This evergreen has 4 inch leaves with spiny edges. It produces clusters of white flowers in summer, followed by red berries (i. e., a pome) around Christmas. These berries are quite showy and edible; however, the birds relish these berries. Bees are also attracted to this plant. It is attractive year-round and once established, it requires no summer water, although, it will thrive with some summer water in a well drained soil. In desert areas, some summer water is required. It likes either full sun or partial shade. It is common on semidry, brushy slopes and in canyons. In the landscape, it is excellent in a shrubby border or on a hillside. It is also valuable as a screen and for erosion control. This plant improves under cultivation: if trimmed to develop an abundance of year old wood, it will produce even more berries than in the wild. It can be pruned to form a small single-trunked tree. However, it does require good drainage as it is prone to root rot and leaf fungus. It is a fire retardant if kept moist.

Hymenoclea salsola, Cheesebush: an erect or spreading bush, twiggy, to 3 feet tall. It's herbage is yellowish-green and resinous. The leaves are sparse on this xerophyte. Flowers are small and greenish or whitish--not showy; this is somewhat unusual for a member of the Asteraceae (the Sunflower Family). This plant is a rank-smelling shrub which early settlers thought had the smell of strong cheese. It is commonly found in sandy washes and rocky uplands in desert areas, often in alkaline soils, below 5000 feet. The pollen of this plant is an important cause of hay fever.

Hyptis emoryi, Desert Lavender: an erect, aromatic shrub, which is from 3 to 9 feet tall. Branches are numerous and slender. Whitish leaves are roundish and crinkled. Small violet flowers appear at the end of the branches from January and May. Common in washes and canyons, below 3000 feet. Not commonly used in the landscape; however, it is good in a natural desert garden.

Isomeris arborea, Bladderpod: in nature, this rounded and erect evergreen frequently grows in subalkaline places such as coastal bluffs, stabilized dunes, and desert washes. It has grayish-green foliage which is quite attractive. It will grow up to 10 feet in height and it is a good background plant in a rock or desert garden. It is good on dry slopes and road banks, because it is quite drought tolerant, requiring no more water than natural rainfall; in fact, it should not be watered during the summer months. It is also a useful shrub for showy flowers in the spring and for erosion control. It's yellow flowers are attractive all year (heaviest during the summer) and it's pods are edible, but spicy-hot. It can grow in a variety of soils. This plant is a member of the caper family (Capparaceae); the capers found in nice restaurants are also in this family, which contains approximately 650 species. Another common name for this shrub is Barrofat because of its great aromatic scent. (Isos means equal) (meris means parts). Propagate by seeds in the fall. It can grow in inhospitable locals.

Juniperus californicus, California Juniper: an arborescent evergreen to 15 feet tall, with stout, irregular stems and a broad, erect, but fairly open, head. It's bark is ashy-gray, with stiff branchlets supporting scale-like leaves. Note: leaves may be an irritant to the skin. Female plants produce bluish to reddish-brown berries which are quite attractive. It occurs on dry slopes and flats, mostly below 5000 feet. Unusual shapes have caused many of these shrubs to be collected illegally. Use in a variety of ways--some include: as a hedge, for a slope cover, and as a single specimen plant. It is drought resistant and will tolerate many types of soils. It prefers full sun, but will grow in the shade of other trees. Do not overwater. It's berries were used by Indians to make a ground meal and the leaves can be used to make a soothing tea.
be collected illegally.

Larrea tridentata, Creosote Bush: also known as Larrea divaricata. This strong-scented evergreen shrub is the most common plant of the Mojave Desert. Branches are brittle, grayish,  and about 6 feet tall. Leaves are yellow-green, small, and waxy. A gummy secretion makes the leaves look vanished and will have a distinctive creosote odor, especially after a rain. It prefers full sun and with water and fertilizer, it will grow taller, leaves will be larger,  and its form will be more dense than in nature. Flowers are solitary, yellow, and occur in April and May (at other times of the year as well). It grows on dry slopes and plains, below 5000 feet. Use as a wind or privacy screen; it will trim into a more formal hedge. Prefers a shallow, dry soil. Indians used this species for its antiseptic properties, medicinal uses, and as a fuel. It is also known as "Greasewood" because of its waxy leaf surface.

Lotus scoparius, Deer Weed: a very low bush, mostly suberect, with erect slender green branches (almost twiggy). It is common to this area, growing from 3 to 4 feet in height. It is a member of the Pea Family (Fabaceae), with golden-yellow to red flowers. This plant can be found blooming all year. The flower has 5 petals, with the top petal larger than the rest and called the Banner. Occurs on dry slopes and alluvial fans, especially after burns, below 5000 feet. In the garden, it drapes nicely over rock walls. If it receives summer watering, it will not live long; however, it will be more attractive.

Lotus scoparius var. brevialatus, Deer Weed: a very low bush, mostly suberect, with erect slender green branches (almost twiggy). It is common to this area, growing from 3 to 4 feet in height. It is a member of the Pea Family (Fabaceae), with golden-yellow to red flowers. This plant can be found blooming all year. The flower has 5 petals, with the top petal larger than the rest and called the Banner. Found in interior valleys and along the west edge of the desert, below 5000 feet. In the garden, it drapes nicely over rock walls. If it receives summer watering, it will not live long; however, it will be more attractive.

Lycium cooperi, Peach-Thorn or Box-Thorn: a compact thorny shrub, standing up to 5 feet tall. It is densely leafy. It flowers between March and May, with greenish-white, funnelform blooms, which hang like a pendant. It is found on dry mesas and slopes, below 5000 feet.

Mimulus bigelovvi, Monkey-Flower: a simple or branched annual, which is from 2 to 10 inches tall and erect. Flowers are mostly clustered at the tips of the stems and occur from March to June. The corolla is a reddish-purple and funnelform. It will flourish in any type of soil. Requires plenty of water. Plant in a desert or rock garden for spring color. Common in dry, sandy or gravelly washes and canyons, below 9000 feet. It is found in Nevada, Arizona, and California. There are 70+ species of Mimulus  in California, representing many forms and colors.

Mimulus cardinalis, Scarlet Monkey-Flower: a freely-branched, erect to decumbent perennial, which is 1 to 4 feet tall. It grows from an underground, running rootstock, which can be easily divided for propagation. Stems are rather floppy. Leaves are dark green and sharply toothed. Corolla is brilliant scarlet to orange-red (sometimes yellowish) and appears from April to October. It is relatively short-lived, as it flowers prolifically. Fortunately, it will reseed freely. Frequent on stream banks, seeps, and other moist places, below 8000 feet. It does best in light shade and it requires water both summer and winter--it will die in dry soil. Also, it will take lots of heat if given partial shade and plenty of water. It will flourish in any type of soil. Severely prune this plant after it flowers or it will become weedy in appearance. This pruning will result in new growth and a heavy second flowering. Since it will flower the first year, it is recommended to use as an annual. It is a good plant to attract hummingbirds with and it is striking beside a pond or stream. It is good on slopes, where it adds color in both spring and summer. There are 70+ species of Mimulus  in California, representing many forms and colors.

Mimulus puniceus, Monkey-Flower: a freely-branched, erect shrub, which is 1 to 4 feet tall. It's green leaves are dark above and lighter below. Corolla is brick-red to orange-red and appears from March to July. It is relatively short-lived, as it flowers prolifically. Fortunately, it will reseed freely. Found on dry slopes and mesas, below 2500 feet. It does best in light shade and it requires water both summer and winter--it will die in dry soil. It will flourish in any type of soil. Severely prune this plant after it flowers or it will become weedy in appearance. This pruning will result in new growth and a heavy second flowering. Since it will flower the first year, it is recommended to use as an annual. There are 70+ species of Mimulus  in California, representing many forms and colors. It is good on slopes, where it adds color in both spring and summer.

Nicotiana glauca, Tree Tobacco: an erect shrub or small tree, which grows from 6 to 25 feet tall. Branching is loose, drooping, and open. Flat green leaves are from 1 to 3 inches in length. It blooms mostly in the spring and summer with tubular yellow flowers. Common in waste places, below 3000 feet. It is not often used in the landscape, but can help with erosion control. Native to South America.

Nolina bigelovii, Bigelow's Nolina: is a perennial with a yuccalike aspect with the stem forming a thick woody trunk, which may be underground. This trunk is much branched and topped with herbaceous stems. Overall, it may reach the size of a 5 foot sphere (somewhat in the shape of a sea urchin). The leaves are flat, with shredding brown fibers on the margins. Leaf bases are at least one inch across. Flowers are borne on a tall spike, from 3 to 9 feet above the plant, which forms a dense panicle of spectacular yellowing or creamy white masses in spring. Found on dry slopes below 3000 feet.

Nolina parryi  ssp.wolfii, Parry's Nolina: similar to Nolina bigleovii, except that it has a simple to few branched woody base and is smaller in size, being less than 3 feet tall. Leaves are in a dense crown and are flat and green.

Nolina parryi  ssp.wolfii, Parry's Nolina: is a perennial with a yuccalike aspect. The stem forms a thick woody trunk, which may be underground; this trunk is simple to few branched and topped with herbaceous stems. Overall, it may reach the size of a 3 foot sphere (somewhat in the shape of a sea urchin). Leaves are in a dense crown and are flat and green. The leaf margin is not fibrous, but toothed like a saw blade. Leaf bases are less than one inch across. The flower stalk is from 9 to 12 feet tall, with a very dense panicle. It blooms from April to June. Found on dry slopes between 3500 to 6000 feet. In the garden, plant in a site with full sun. While it grows best in a rocky, well drained soil, it will do fairly well in a heavy soil, provided it is not watered during the summer. Use in a dry native garden, a desert garden, or on a rocky hillside, where it is an attractive accent plant. It will require water and attention during it's first year. Individuals may begin to bloom after 7 or 8 years of growth and almost yearly after that. Propagate by seeds.

Prosopis glandulosa  var. torreyana, Mesquite: a low tree or large shrub, with several trunks and crooked, arching branches, armed with paired spines. It will reach from 9 to 30 feet high and over 40 feet wide. It's bright green, linear leaves are bipinnate, with up to 20 leaflets; these leaves are deciduous. It's greenish to yellow flowers are not showy and appear between April and June. As a member of the Fabaceae (the Pea Family), it has fruit in the form of straight or curved legumes (Prosopis pubescens  has fruit which is tightly coiled). This fruit is eaten by wildlife and in the past, by Indians of the area. It is common in washes and other low places in the desert, below 3000 feet. This tree was once called Prosopis juliflora, which is found south of the U. S. It serves well as a shade tree in desert areas; it is also a good windbreak or screen. It grows best in a deep soil where it's taproot will go down great distances for water. It will survive in a shallow rocky soil, but it will be shrubby. It tolerates drought, alkaline soils, or irrigated lawns.

Prunus fasciculata, Desert Almond: a much branched, deciduous shrub, to 6 feet tall. It is armed with short, stiff, thorn-like twigs. It's leaves are pale green and in clusters. It flowers between March and May. It is a member of the Rosaceae (the Rose Family). Found on dry slopes and in washes, between 2500 and 6500 feet. It is valued for it's attractive form and for the texture of it's foliage.

Prunus virginiana, Western Chokecherry: an erect, deciduous shrub or small tree, which may reach from 3 to 18 feet tall. Bark is a smooth gray-brown. Leaves are about 4 inches in length, oblong, and light green; they provide a good display of autumn foliage color. Flowers in May and June with small white flowers. Dark red fruit is bitter, but edible, especially late in the season; a jelly can be made from the otherwise distasteful berries.  A nice plant for cold weather areas. Drought and heat tolerant. It tends to sucker freely. Dampish places in woods and on brushy slopes and flats, below 8200 feet.

Rhamnus californica, Coffeeberry: an evergreen shrub which will grow to between 3 to 8 feet in  height (15 feet). It's form may either be upright and rounded or low and spreading. The bark of twigs is usually reddish. Leaves are dusty to dark green, measure about 4 inches in length, and are shiny above (color will vary beneath). It is capable of growing in shade, part shade, or full sun. Once established, this plant will need no care. Small fruit which have the appearance of coffee berries will develop in the summer; these berries will be green, black, or red when ripe. An excellent plant for foundation planting or as a specimen; also useful as a screen or background plant. It may be used as a hedge or in a shrubbery with Ceanothus sp. , Lilac or Cercis occidentalis, Western Redbud. Sandy and rocky locals along the coast, hillsides and ravines farther inland, below 3500 feet (some subspecies may reach an elevation of 7700 feet). This shrub is not particular as to soil and it is tolerant of dry conditions. This plant is grown for it's form and foliage, occasionally for show of it's berry-like fruit. Near the ocean, it will tend to be broad and spreading; in woodlands or hills, it will be taller.

Rhamnus californica ssp.tomentella, Coffeeberry: an evergreen shrub which will grow to between 3 to 15 feet in  height. It's form may either be upright and rounded or low and spreading. The bark of twigs is usually reddish. Leaves are dull to bright green above and woolly-white beneath. It is capable of growing in shade, part shade, or full sun. Once established, this plant will need no care. Small fruit which have the appearance of coffee berries will develop in the summer; these berries will be green, black, or red when ripe. An excellent plant for foundation planting or as a specimen; also useful as a screen or background plant. It may be used as a hedge or in a shrubbery with Ceanothus sp. , Lilac or Cercis occidentalis, Western Redbud. This shrub is not particular as to soil and it is tolerant of dry conditions. This plant is grown for it's form and foliage, occasionally for show of it's berry-like fruit. Dry slopes and canyons, 2000 to 7500 feet.

Rhamnus crocea, Redberry or Buckhorn: this spreading evergreen will grow to heights of 6 feet. It's form is of a rigid, much-branched shrub. It blooms in March and April with inconspicuous, greenish flowers (which lack petals). It later produces soft red berries (actually a drupe). It's leaves are holly-like and very small. It is capable of growing in shade, part shade, or full sun. It is a good plant for a foundation planting or an informal hedge. It tolerates trimming very well and can be kept as a low clipped hedge. It can be allowed grow into a small shrub or tree. In the late summer, the female plant is covered with bright red berries; hence, a male plant is required in the garden for the showy berries to develop. This plant is a dominant shrub to the Chaparral plant community growing mostly in dry washes and canyons below 3000 feet. It grows best in a coarse, well-drained soil and during the summer, it needs little or no water. A relative of this plant, Rhamnus purshiana, is an effective laxative and is used in commercial medicinal preparations. Propagate by seeds. This plant is grown for it's form and foliage, occasionally for show of it's berry-like fruit. Near the ocean, it will tend to be broad and spreading; in woodlands or hills, it will be taller. If planted inland from it's native range, it will grow  best with some shade. This subspecies is less drought tolerant than ssp. ilicifolia. The berries will stain sidewalks and patios.

Rhamnus crocea ssp. ilicifolia, Holy Leaved Redberry: this spreading evergreen will grow to heights of from 3 to 15 feet. It's form is of a rigid, much-branched shrub; however, it is often tree-like. It blooms in March and April with inconspicuous, greenish flowers (which lack petals). It later produces soft red berries (actually a drupe). It's leaves are holly-like and very small. It is a good plant for a foundation planting or an informal hedge. It tolerates trimming very well and can be kept as a low clipped hedge. In the late summer, the female plant is covered with bright red berries; hence, a male plant is required in the garden for the showy berries to develop. Dry slopes, mostly below 5000 feet. It grows best in a coarse, well-drained soil and during the summer, it needs little or no water. A relative of this plant, Rhamnus purshiana, is an effective laxative and is used in commercial medicinal preparations. Propagate by seeds. This plant is grown for it's form and foliage, occasionally for show of it's berry-like fruit. Near the ocean, it will tend to be broad and spreading; in woodlands or hills, it will be taller. A good ornamental plant for dry banks or for an informal screen in hot sun areas. This subspecies is more drought tolerant than the species. The berries will stain sidewalks and patios.

Rhododendron occidentale, Western Azalea: also known as Azalea occidentale. A loosely branched shrub, from 3 to 10 feet tall (occasionally as tall as 15 feet). Leaves are thin, light green, and deciduous. Bark is shredding Flower is funnelform, white or with a pink tinge, and occurs from April through August. Stream banks and moist places, below 7500 feet.

Rhus integrifolia, Lemonade Berry: is an evergreen shrub with sturdy branches and a round appearance. It will grow to a height of 10 feet. Its leaves are thick, dark, and leathery. Flowers appear between February and May and are white to rose in coloration. It produces sticky red berries which taste like lemonade: the pulp of these berries are sometimes used as a drink flavoring. Naturally grows on ocean bluffs and in dry canyons below 2000 feet. It is not particular as to culture, as it readily adapts to garden care: a fine plant for a hedge, as it may be sheared; also useful as an espalier on a fence or wall. It serves as a good screen or background plant and it does well on slopes. It makes a wonderful groundcover on rocky slopes which are exposed to salt laden winds; one plant will eventually spawl over a wide area, even down a cliff. It grows best near the coast and once established, it requires no water. Propagate by seeds planted in the autumn. This plant is very susceptible to verticillium wilt. It will grow in almost any soil, but it requires good drainage; soggy soils may kill it. Although it is drought resistant, it thrives best if watered deeply once a month during the summer months. It will take normal garden watering if the drainage is good. It is fire resistant if fairly well watered and it is useful for erosion control. Evergreen species are not as hardy as the deciduous species.

Malosma laurina, Laurel Sumac: also known as Rhus laurina, this evergreen shrub (or small tree) grows to 20 feet. It is sometimes almost tree-like with a rounded crown.Twigs are reddish. The pleasantly aromatic foliage is light green and somewhat folded along the midrib. In the summer, it produces clusters of white terminal flowers; the dead flowers may persist. White berry-like fruit attracts birds. Naturally occurs on dry slopes below 3000 feet. Once established, this rapid grower requires no summer water. It serves as a good screen or as a bank cover; however, it is frost sensitive and should not be placed where there is a high danger of frost; however, it will come back quickly from the stump. It is useful as an espalier plant or as a clipped hedge. It also aids in erosion control. It can be grown from seed planted in the fall or early spring. Note: some individuals are skin sensitive to this plant. It will grow in almost any soil, but it requires good drainage; soggy soils may kill it. Although it is drought resistant, it thrives best if watered deeply once a month during the summer months. It will take normal garden watering if the drainage is good. It is fire resistant if fairly well watered and it is useful for erosion control. Evergreen species are not as hardy as the deciduous species. It will become rangy unless trimmed periodically.

Rhus ovata, Sugar Bush: a sturdy, drought tolerant evergreen shrub (to a small tree), which can grow to 10 feet tall. Twigs are stout and reddish. Leaves are dark green, leathery, and folded along the midrib. It's leaves will be larger if it is grown in the shade. It produces dense clusters of white or pinkish terminal flowers between March and May. It's berries are small, reddish, and hairy-coated with a sugary secretion; they will be quickly discovered and then devoured by birds. It does well in both shade and full sun and it is drought tolerant. It is heat tolerant, but it is hard to establish in hot weather; consequently, in hot environments, such as desert areas, plant during the fall and winter months. It grows best in a soil with good drainage, but will tolerate a variety of soils. It represents one of the most desirable native shrubs as it is attractive year around and is not troubled to any degree by pests or diseases. It's compact habit make it most useful as a specimen shrub, a screen, or a background planting. It is also desirable as a roadside planting and a bank cover. Dry slopes, below 2500 feet; mostly in the Chaparral Plant community and usually away from the coast. It will grow in almost any soil, but it requires good drainage; soggy soils may kill it. Although it is drought resistant, it thrives best if watered deeply once a month during the summer months. It will take normal garden watering if the drainage is good. It is fire resistant if fairly well watered and it is useful for erosion control. Evergreen species are not as hardy as the deciduous species. It can be planted along the coast; however, do not expose it to salt spray and sea winds.

Rhus trilobata, Squaw Bush: a diffusely branched shrub with spreading branches which often turn down at the tips. Being deciduous, it will have brilliant yellow to red colors in the fall. It often reaches a height of 4 to 6 feet. Herbage is strong scented when crushed and is considered unpleasant by most people. Leaves are trifoliate and green, which makes this plant easily confused with Poison Oak. In March and April, it blooms with yellowish flowers arranged in clustered spikes, which is followed by bright crimson berries. These berries are covered with a viscid secretion; it was used to prepare a sweet drink something similar to lemonade. In nature, it is common in canyons and washes, especially in interior valleys, mostly below 5500 feet. It's clumping habit makes it a natural low hedge. Also, it makes a good barrier or screen. It is very tolerant or heat and drought. It also tolerates shade or full sun. It's flexible twigs were used by California Indians to make baskets and woven mats. It is hardy anywhere and will thrive in poor soils. It produces suckers, especially if it's roots are disturbed by soil cultivation. It does require some water.

Rhus trilobata  var. anisophylla, Squaw Bush: a diffusely branched shrub with spreading branches which often turn down at the tips. Being deciduous, it will have brilliant yellow to red colors in the fall. It often reaches a height of 4 to 6 feet. Herbage is strong scented when crushed and is considered unpleasant by most people. Leaves are trifoliate and green, which makes this plant easily confused with Poison Oak. In March and April, it blooms with yellowish flowers arranged in clustered spikes, which is followed by bright crimson berries. These berries are covered with a viscid secretion; it was used to prepare a sweet drink something similar to lemonade. In nature, it is common in canyons and washes, especially in interior valleys, mostly below 5500 feet. It's clumping habit makes it a natural low hedge. Also, it makes a good barrier or screen. It is very tolerant or heat and drought. It also tolerates shade or full sun. It's flexible twigs were used by California Indians to make baskets and woven mats. It is hardy anywhere and will thrive in poor soils. It produces suckers, especially if it's roots are disturbed by soil cultivation. It does require some water.

Ribes nevadense, Mountain Currant: an open, deciduous shrub, with slender stems, which is from 3 to 8 feet tall. It has attractive light-green foliage; leaves are roundish in outline with 3 to 5 toothed lobes. Flowers are rose to a rather deep red and occur from May to July. Berries are round, blue-black, and edible, but the birds will get most of them. Moist places and along streams, between 3000 and 10,000 feet.

Ribes roezlii, Sierra Currant: a stout, sun-loving shrub, which is from 2 to 4 feet tall. Branches are spreading and armed with straight spines. Leaves are roundish and somewhat 3-lobed; they are dark green and shiny above, paler beneath. Flowers are whitish with purplish-red sepals and occur in May and June. Berries are covered with long spines and turn purple when ripe; the birds will get most of them. Dry open slopes, between 3000 and 10,000 feet.

Ribes speciosum, Fuchsia-Flowered Gooseberry: a nearly evergreen shrub, which reaches from 3 to 6 feet tall. It has long, simple branches, which are spreading and bristly. Branches are armed with stout spines, which are up to 1 inch long. Leaves are roundish and somewhat 3-lobed; they are dark green and shiny above, paler beneath. Hanging, tubular flowers are red and occur from January through May. Berries are covered with a bristly 'hair' and are quite sticky. Common in shaded canyons near the coast, below 1500 feet. Plant in the sun near the coast or in shade if located inland. It tolerates much drought and heat once it has been established, but it is deciduous from summer into the fall; however, with a little summer water, it is nearly evergreen. It makes an excellent barrier planting or specimen plant; also, it is good in a mixed planting or as a filler. It is especially attractive on a bank where the flowers may be viewed from below. It mixes well with Heteromeles arbuifolia, Toyon and Quercus agrifolia, Coast Live Oak. Propagate by seeds or by cuttings taken in fall.

Rosa californica, California Wild Rose: a deciduous shrub reaching about 4 feet tall; it will climb to 12 feet if given support. It's form is erect and branched, with stems which are armed with stout prickles. Leaves are pinnately compound and green. It's pink flowers are 1 inch across and only have five petals; it blooms from May through August. Fairly common to moist places, canyons, near streams, etc., below 6000 feet.

Rubus parvifolia, Thimbleberry: a graceful shrub, which is deciduous and mostly 3 to 6 feet high. Branches are arching and lack prickles. Bark is shreddy in age. Large leaves are palmate with a rough edge. Flowers appear from March through August and are white to pink. Fruit is similar to a blackberry, only scarlet; birds are attracted to them. Good drainage, dryish soil, sun or light shade. Open woods and in canyons, below 8000 feet.

Salazaria mexicana, Paper Bag Bush or Bladder-Sage: an intricately branched shrub, which is between 2 and 3 feet tall. It's leaves are green. It's flowers are arranged in a spiked raceme, with a purple corolla, and they appear between March and June. It's fruit looks like a paper sack. Common in dry washes and canyons below 5000 feet. Desert ground squirrels will open the papery seed pods and extract the seeds as a source of food.

Salvia apiana, White Sage: this plant reaches about 6 feet in height. It is shrubby below with the current years growth being long, erect branches which have the flowers appearing at their tips. Foliage is white. Blooms from late spring to midsummer with white flowers, usually with lavender (blue?). Common on dry benches and slopes, mostly below 5000 feet. An excellent plant for an herb garden. It is good on slopes and in drought stricken areas, where it needs little summer water. Also, it makes a good border plant. It's white or gray foliage makes a good contrast with other plants.

Salvia clevelandii, Cleveland Sage: a fragrant, rounded shrub, which can reach 3 feet tall. It's frosted-looking, ashy leaves are attached to upright stems, giving this plant a handsome appearance year-round. It blooms between April and July with dark blue-violet flowers, which attract hummingbirds and bees. Both the foliage and the flowers have a delightful fragrance. Full sun and good drainage will assure this sage a long life. It is drought tolerant, requiring practically no water in the summer; however, it will survive frequent irrigation, but will require pruning in exchange. For best appearances, prune after the frosts have passed. Occurs naturally on dry slopes below 3000 feet. A good substitute for Salvia officinalis in cooking. Propagate by seeds in fall or winter. Use with plants which have similar cultural requirements.

Salvia mellifera, Black Sage: a 4 to 5 feet tall evergreen, with herbaceous twigs and an openly branched appearance. Leaves are green and crinkled. It flowers in late spring or early summer with blue (occasionally white) flowers. It should be cut back periodically to keep it thick. A good shrub for slopes and once established, it requires no summer water. Naturally common on dry slopes and benches below 2000 feet.

Salvia vaseyi, White Sage: a whitish, rounded shrub, which grows up to 5 feet high. Leaves are white with crinkled margins. Flowers are also white and occur from April to June. Dry rocky slopes and canyons, below 2500 feet; known best from canyons and mountainsides to the west of the Salton Sink. Once established, it requires no summer water.

Simmondsia chinensis, Jojoba: with its rigid branches, this shrub will grow to heights of 3 to 6 feet. The leaves are leathery, gray-green, and deciduous. It flowers from March to May, with a disappointing display. Male and female flowers are located on separate plants; consequently, both are needed for fruit formation. The fruit is oily and bitter, but is edible raw. The nuts were once used as coffee substitutes. The oil from this plant has replaced the use of whale oil and bees wax in electronic insulation; as a result, it represents a cash crop for marginal land. Young plants are rather tender, but once established, they will tolerate temperatures down to 15 o F and will require little water. Prefers full sun and lots of heat. Serves well as a clipped hedge and as a foundation planting in a desert garden. Locally common on dry, barren slopes below 5000 feet. This plant is also known as Deer Nut and/or Goat Nut.

Symphoricarpos mollis, Snowberry: a low, trailing shrub, which is 1 to 3 feet tall. Twigs are covered with short, curved hairs. Deciduous leaves are roundish-oval. Flowers appear in April through June and are white to pinkish. Clusters of white berries are conspicuous in the fall and winter. Best in part shade. Tolerates drought. Common on shaded slopes, below 5000 feet.

Tetradymia axillaris, Cotton-Thorn: a rigidly branched shrub, covered with a dense white 'wool,' which grows up to 4 feet tall. It's stems are covered with slender, rigid spines, which are about 1 inch in length. The foliage is deciduous during the dry season; the leaves are linear and green. It's flowers appear in April and May with a yellow aster-type head flower (it is a member of the family Asteraceae). It is common on dry slopes and flats, between 2000 and 6400 feet.

Toxicodendron diversilobum, Poison Oak: also known as Rhus diversiloba. An erect shrub, bushy, 3 to 6 feet tall. It is stiffly branched and deciduous. Leaves are pinnately 3-foliate, bright green, and shiny above (somewhat paler beneath); in the fall, the foliage will turn a bright orange or scarlet. Toxicodendron means 'poison tree,' and as the name implies, this plant is a hazard to most people; it is very oily and exposure to this oil may result in a painful dermatitis; even breathing the smoke from burning plants is harmful. It is wise to wash thoroughly after any possible exposure, especially before ingesting food. Common in low places, thickets, and wooded slopes, below 5000 feet. In the open or in filtered sunlight, it will grow as a dense leafy shrub; where shaded, it becomes a tall-climbing vine. It is hardy anywhere and will thrive in poor soils. It produces suckers, especially if it's roots are disturbed by soil cultivation. It does require some water. The best method for irradicating this plant is by using a chemical brush killer. This plant is hardest to identify during winter and early spring because it consists of bare branches; even these branches may cause the typical rash if brushed against.

Vitis girdiana, California Wild Grape or Desert Grape: a woody vine, which climbs via tendrils, with stems between 3 and 20 feet long. Leaves are palmately lobed. Flowers  are small, greenish, and fragrant, and appear in May and June. The fruit is a black, edible berry, which is rather dry. This species is recommended as the best of the native vines for providing shade. It is a most attractive plant for trellises and for planting along sunny walls and fences. It is not particular as to soil, even growing in heavy adobe, but it does require considerable water. Canyon bottoms, along streams, etc., below 4000 feet. Propagate by seeds in the fall and/or cuttings in the spring.

Xylococcus bicolor, Mission Manzanita: this erect, densely-branched shrub gets its name from its bark which resembles a true Manzanita (this plant is not a true Manzanita).  The bark sheds persistently. Its evergreen leaves are usually dark green above and yellowy below (hence the name bicolor) and they are often curled if the climate has been dry. The flowers are white or pink and occur during the winter. Found naturally on dry slopes below 2000 feet. It serves very well as a background planting or as a specimen in a landscape with some moisture in the summer.
 

Other Plants:

Abronia pogonantha, Sand-Verbena:  a much branched annual with ascending to decumbent stems, which grows to about 1-1/2 feet in height. It has dull green leaves and is succulent, often reddish in color. It flowers from April to July, with rose-pink or  white blooms. The mature plant has a stout taproot, which serves as a reservoir for food and water. It will die back in the winter. It does best in full sun and in a well-drained light sandy loam, but can be raised in a wide variety of soils. It is tolerant of salt and wind. It needs some summer water and likes cool conditions. In the garden, it fulfills a special niche: plant on a sandy bank or exposed slope near the coast, where it will help to bind the soil and prevent slippage. It is a difficult plant to establish, because it is sought out by snails, slugs, and other insects. Found on sandy places, mostly 2000 to 5000 feet. Seeds are difficult to locate after flowering.

Abronia umbellata, Sand-Verbena: a perennial with slender prostrate stems up to 3 feet in length. It is sparsely to much-branched and has dull green leaves.  It is succulent and often reddish in color. It flowers most of the year, with rose or sometimes whitish blooms. The mature plant has a stout taproot, which serves as a reservoir for food and water. It will die back in the winter. It does best in full sun and in a well-drained light sandy loam, but can be raised in a wide variety of soils. It is tolerant of salt and wind. It needs some summer water and likes cool conditions. In the garden, it fulfills a special niche: plant on a sandy bank or exposed slope near the coast, where it will help to bind the soil and prevent slippage. It is a difficult plant to establish, because it is sought out by snails, slugs, and other insects. Seeds are difficult to locate after flowering.

Abronia villosa, Sand-Verbena:  a much-branched, trailing annual with stout, hairy stems, can reach a length of from 4 to 20 inches. Flowers are a rose-purple, with a delicate and agreeable fragrance and occur from February to July. It will thrive in conditions of heat and drought. Seeds are difficult to locate after flowering. Common in open sandy places, mostly below 5000 feet.  It is partial to dunes and sand flats where it fulfills a special niche: it will help to bind the soil and prevent slippage. It is a difficult plant to establish, because it is sought out by snails, slugs, and other insects.

Achellea tomentosa, Woolly Yarrow: it grows from 1 to 2 feet tall with white flowers (sometimes cream or yellow). Feathery foliage. Often used as a slope cover and in hydroseeding. takes sun or shade.

Adiantum jordanii, California Maidenhair Fern: a delicate fern arising from a slender, creeping rhizome. Fronds are ascending to pendent, 8 to 30 inches long. Leaflets are fan shaped and bright green. Stems are thin, wiry, and dark. Damp shaded banks at the base of rocks and trees, mostly below 3500 feet. It requires shade, steady moisture, and a soil rich in organic matter. It will die back during a hard frost. Protect from snails and slugs.

Argemone corymbosa, Prickly Poppy: a spiny perennial with stems reaching to about 2 feet in length. Leaves are spiny. This rare desert plant produces a white flower, with thin sinuate margins; blooming occurs in April and May. It lives in some of the most inhospitable environments: Steep, rocky slopes or at the edge of scrub brush covered flats. It prefers excellent drainage for it's taproot, full sun, hot summers, and a location lacking competition. It works well in any large garden and can serve as the centerpiece at the back of a mixed border. It is appropriate in any location which needs a tall plant with showy summer flowers. Extremely drought tolerant and requires good drainage. A favorite of bees. It grows easily from seed planted where the plant is to bloom or from pots for gentle transplanting. Dry slopes and flats, between 1400 and 3500 feet.

Astragalus sp., Locoweed: a spreading annual with a purplish fringe. Papery pods and stems are purplish also.

Brassica campestris, Field Mustard: an erect annual, which is from 1 to 4 feet tall. Leaves are deeply lobed, hairy, and dark green. Flowers are showy, yellow, and arranged in long racemes; it blooms mostly between January and May, but in other months as well. A very common weed in field and waste places. It is a beautiful slope cover during the spring, but dead plants are obnoxious to remove in the summer. A native of Europe.

Cirsium sp., Thistle: annual, biennial, or perennial herbs, mostly 2 to 4 feet high. Stems and leaves are covered with yellow spines. Leaves are deeply lobed and often covered with a beautiful white to gray wool. Flowers are contained in large heads and vary in color from lavender through red-violet to dark crimson. Some species are very attractive due to their silver-grey color and their flowers, making them a desirable addition to the garden. However, these large plants are not recommended for the small garden. Use in a rock garden or along a dry border. Prefers full sun or a very light shade and a sandy, well-drained soil. They are a favorite gopher food, so they may need to be grown in a container. Flowers are attractive to hummingbirds and butterflies. Propagate by seeds sown in place. Unfortunately, it will not live long under cultivation. There are 30+ species in California.

Datura discolor, Jimson Weed: an erect annual which is from 8 to 20 inches tall. Dark green leaves are broadly circular, with a toothed margin. Corolla is white with a purplish tinge in the throat; flowering occurs between April and October. Provide ample water to encourage growth and flowering. Common in the autumn in sandy washes and irrigated areas of the Colorado Desert region, below 1500 feet. The Cahuillas made a decoction from Datura  and administered it to boys at the time of their manhood initiation. During the next five days, the adult males of the tribe would teach the boys rituals such as, the sounds of enemies, how to dance, and how to use the gourd rattles as an accompaniment. This plant is poisonous.

Datura meteloidos, Jimson Weed: an erect, widely branched perennial, with stems growing from 2 to 4 feet in height. It's leaves are large and deep green. It flowers all year with a very showy, white flower, which is in the form of a trumpet. Found in sandy or gravelly soil, in dry open places, below 4000 feet. This plant is poisonous. It is possible that this plant was introduced from Mexico. Provide ample water to encourage growth and flowering.

Descurainia pinnata ssp. menziesii, Tansy Mustard: an annual, which is from 4 to 24 inches tall. Stems are simple to short branched. Green leaves are finely divided. Bright yellow flowers are in a raceme (i. e., a long spike) and appear from March to June. Common in both deserts on dry soil, up to 8000 feet. Often found in the shade of large shrubs. Rarely used as an ornamental.

Equisetum hyemale, Equisetum or Horsetails: a reed-like plant, which is arranged in massive clumps and which spreads by rhizomes (i. e., underground shoots). Aerial stems persist for several years; they are green, rigid, erect and usually unbranched. Stems originate from the perennial, creeping and branched rhizome and reach a height of from 5 to 6 feet. This plant does not appear to have leaves or flowers. Useful in marshy areas, pools, and roadside ditches. It can be invasive but is still attractive near pools and in oriental settings. It is best to plant in a container (even sinking the container into the ground). In open ground, root prune rigorously and keep cutting back unwanted shoots. Prefers sun or partial shade. In nature, it is much more sparse and much smaller. Occasional in colonies, below 8500 feet.

Eriogonum inflatum, Desert Trumpet: a perennial herb, which can be used as a strict annual, reaching from 8 inches to 4 feet tall. Named for it's stem, which is inflated at it's upper end. Green leaves are basal, lying flat against the soil, and somewhat spoon-shaped. Small yellow flowers are found at the upper tips of the branched stems and appear from March to October.This plant is very conspicuous because of it's inflated stems; consequently, it is usually grown for of it's curious appearance. Good in a desert garden or as a specimen plant in a hot, inland garden. Dried plants serve as intriguing indoor arrangements. Common to both deserts in washes and along mesas, below 6000 feet.

Eschscholtzia minutiflora, Pygmy Gold Poppy: an annual with several ascending stems, which is from 4 to 20 inches in height. Stems are branched and leafy throughout. Leaves are thick and finely dissected. Small flowers are bright yellow and occur from March to May. Common to both deserts in sandy and gravelly places, below 5000 feet. Best when used on sunny hillsides, in dry fields, and in native gardens. Broadcast seed in the fall on a loose, well drained soil. Reseeds freely if not crowded out by weeds. Birds are attracted to the seed.

Foeniculum vulgare, Sweet Fennel: a tall, deep green perennial, which is from 3 to 6 feet high. Compound leaves are filiform. Yellow flowers are arranged in compound umbels and appear from May to September. This plant has a strong odor of licorice. It is often grown as a summer annual; also, it is often considered a roadside or garden weed. Start from seed sown in place. It prefers a light, well-drained soil and full sun. Very drought tolerant. Seeds are used to season bread and puddings; leaves are used as a garnish for salads and fish. Seeds are attractive to birds. Very common in field and waste places. A native of Europe.

Fragaria chiloensis, Wild or Beach Strawberry: a perennial herb with a scaly rootstock and which spreads by runners. It is from 1 to 2 inches tall. Leaves are many and in three parts. It flowers from March through August with white to pinkish flowers. This groundcover is a standard in the horticulture field. Fragaria virginiana is also found here; it's leaves are thinner.

Fragaria chiloensis, Wild or Beach Strawberry: this species is similar to the wild strawberry planted ornamentally in Southern California, but it's leaves are more delicate. It is a perennial herb with a scaly rootstock, which will spread by runners. It is from 1 to 2 inches tall. Evergreen leaves are trifoliate, dark green, and glossy; they take on a red tints in the winter and are larger when grown in the shade. It flowers from May through July with white to pinkish flowers. For the best flowers, plant in full sun. Edible bright red strawberries appear in the fall and are usually reached by birds first; fruit seldom sets in the garden. Requires an annual mowing or cutting back in early spring to force new growth and prevent stem buildup. Fertilize every year in the late spring. In late summer, apply iron sulfate if the leaves show yellowing. This groundcover is a standard in the horticulture field. Fragaria virginiana is also found here; it's leaves are thinner. Damp banks and woods, between 4000 and 10,500 feet.

Fragaria virginiana, Wild Strawberry: this species is similar to the wild strawberry planted ornamentally in Southern California, but it's leaves are more delicate. It is a perennial herb with a scaly rootstock. Leaves are trifoliate and are larger when grown in the shade. It will spread by runners. It flowers from May through July with white to pinkish flowers. For the best flowers, plant in full sun. Edible strawberries are usually reached by birds first. Damp banks and woods, between 4000 and 10,500 feet.

Heuchera maxima, Giant Coral Bells: a perennial herb arising from a woody base. Leaves are mostly basal, round, and toothed; leaves tend to be larger  than the commercial Coral Bells. Flowers occur from February through April and range in color from white and  pink to yellow. It is used as a groundcover. It requires shade. Canyon walls and cliffs, near the coast.

Juncus effusus  var. pacificus, Wire Grass: this grass grows nicely in rounded clumps, up to 3 feet in diameter, if not disturbed. Rootstocks are stout and profusely branched. Stems are in dense tufts, from 2 to 4 feet high. Flowers are not too spectacular, but interesting. Best near water or ponds. Tolerates the shade of trees nicely. Rather common in moist places, below 8000 feet. Well distributed throughout the state except in the deserts.

Lavatera sp., Tree-Mallow: a

Lonicera sp., Wild Honeysuckle: a

Malacothrix glabrata, Desert Dandelion: also known as Malacothrix californica var. glabrata.  A 4 to 16 inch high annual, with it's leaves arranged as a basal rosette. Leaves are 2 to 5 inches long and strap-like. Head flowers are yellow and appear from March through June. During years where there has been sufficient rain, this flower may cover large areas of the desert with yellow. Dry, sandy plains and washes, below 6000 feet.

Marrubium vulgare, Horehound: a white-woolly herb which reaches from 8 to 24 inches tall. This perennial is erect and will branch from the base. Leaves are roundish, crinkled, and fuzzy beneath. White flowers appear during the spring and summer. Common pestiferous weed in waste places and old fields. The dried calyx forms a bur. Naturalized from Europe. It grows best in poor, sandy, and dry soil and in full sun. As a garden plant, it is rather weedy looking, but can serve as edging in a gray garden. It has been used for medicinal purposes and in candy. The foliage lasts well in a bouquet.

Mirabilis bigelovii, Four-O'Clock: an erect or ascending perennial herb, which is much branched and can reach 1-1/2 feet tall. The stems and leaves are a deep green. It arises from stout woody roots which often grow deeply between rocks. The flowers are a pale pink or pale lavender (occasionally white) and occur in October or November. After flowering, the stems usually will lose their leaves and by fall or early winter, the plant will enter dormancy. Found on rocky places, especially in canyons, below 7000 feet. It serves as the middle plant of a mixed border or in front of drought tolerant shrubs in a desert setting. Also, it is good on a hot, dry slope in full sun. Propagate by seeds.

Monoptilon bellioides, Desert Star: a small desert annual, which is about 1 to 2 inches tall. Slender stems branch from it's base; consequently, a single plant may cover an area of up to 10 inches in diameter. Herbage is covered with stiff hairs. Leaves are linear to spatulate. Flowers are daisy-like with white ray flowers and yellow disk flowers; blooming occurs from February to May and again in September. Abundant in both deserts on sandy or stoney desert plains, below 3000 feet. Rarely used as an ornamental.

Muhlenbergia rigens, Bunch or Deer Grass: a coarse, perennial grass, arising from a knotty rhizomatous base, which is from 2 to 4 feet tall. In the form of erect to widely spreading clumps. Flowers appear from June to September. This plant is scarcely palatable to grazing livestock. Dry or damp places, below 7000 feet.

Nama depressum, Purple Mat: a low, branching annual, with stems reaching from 1 to 4 inches long. Leaves are well distributed on it's stems. It produces deep pink to purple flowers sometime in April or May. Sandy places, below 3000 feet.

Nephrolepis sp., Sword Fern

Oenothera clavaeformis, Brown-eyed Primrose: also known as Camissonia clavaeformis. An annual, with either a single to several stems, which is from 2 to 20 inches tall. Leaves are mostly in a basal rosette and compound, with toothed margins. Flowers are arranged in a raceme, open during the midday, and occurring from March to May; the corolla is white with a reddish-brown base and often dries to a reddish color. Common to the southern Colorado Desert and Baja California. Valued for showy early summer flowers in tough, rough locals. A notorious seeder which may have to be discouraged from taking over the entire garden. Best in full sun. Sandy plains and washes of both deserts, below 4000 feet.

Oenothera deltoides, Dune Evening primrose: a spring or winter annual, with a single, branched stem, which is 2 to 12 inches tall. Lower leaves arranged in a loose rosette and are somewhat toothed; upper leaves are reduced and obviously toothed. Large, showy flowers are white, but become pink with age; they open mostly during the evening and are sweet scented. Blooming occurs from March to May. It often grows with Sand Verbena. The outer stems turn inward and outward forming 'baskets' or 'bird cages.' The larvae of the two-lined sphinx moth feed on the leaves; Indians, in turn, eat the larvae living on the plant. Valued for showy early summer flowers in tough, rough locals. A notorious seeder which may have to be discouraged from taking over the entire garden. Prefers full sun. Common in sandy places of both deserts, below 3500 feet.

Penstemon clevelandii, Penstemon or Beard-tongue: a multistemmed, perennial shrub, which is from 1 to 3 feet high. Leaves are whitish-green to deep green, entire to toothed. Flowers are crimson to purplish-red, arranged in a long spike (i. e., raceme), and occur from March to May. Hummingbirds are attracted to the flowers. Best in full sun or light shade inland. Requires fast drainage--best in a loose, gravelly soil, with infrequent watering. Tends to be short lived. Dry, open slopes, from 2500 to 5500 feet. Found in canyons along the desert borders of San Diego County. There are about 60 species of Penstemon  in California, representing many forms and colors; a few are widely grown, but most others are sold only by specialists.

Penstemon spp., Penstemon or Beard-tongue: perennial herb or shrub with showy flowers.

Phacelia spp., Phacelia or Heliotrope: annual or perennial herbs of the foothills or deserts. Leaves vary from entire to dentate to pinnate depending on the species. Flowers are deep blue, violet, purple, white or yellow, again depending on the species. This group of plants are common to the California desert areas, up to 8000 feet elevation. For best effect, plant each Heliotrope as a single specimen instead of in a mass (which is the usual method for an annual). Best in full sun and in a well drained soil. There are 19 species of Phacelia in Anza Borrego alone. Most species are easily grown from seeds or cuttings. Propagate by readily-germinating seeds sown in late fall to early spring. Only a few species are used ornamentally and none of these are found in the desert.

Pteridium aquilinum  var. pubescens, Brake or Bracken Fern: a course fern with long rhizomes, which are creeping, branched, underground, and clothed with hairs. Fronds are stout, erect, and 1 to 7 feet tall. At lower elevations, it is found in moist places and at higher elevations, it is a common groundcover in forests, up to 10,000 feet. Found mostly during the wet season, as it needs moisture. It dies back yearly (during the winter), but then grows back. It is reasonably drought tolerant; it goes dormant if there is not enough water to sustain foliage. It can tolerate either sun or deep shade. It makes a good slope cover and a beautiful understory for trees. Also, it is most appropriate in an untamed garden. It shades out most weeds. Beware: it's deep rootstocks can make it a tough, invasive weed.

Romneya coulteri, Mitilija Poppy: a naturalized

Rubus vitifolius, California Blackberry: a green mound-builder with long, running stems, which root from the tip. This plant develops biennial canes from perennial rootstock. Stems may trail or partially climb. Leaves are trifoliate and covered with straight bristles. Flowers occur between March and July and are followed by edible black fruit. Woods and somewhat damp places, below 4000 feet. Canes are biennial: they develop and grow the first year, then flower and set fruit the second year. Prune the second year canes back to the ground in August after harvest. Needs a deep soil, full sun and ample water through the growing season.

Salvia columbariae, Chia: a simple or branched annual, which is from 4 to 20 inches tall. Gray leaves are mostly basal and are deeply lobed. Flowers are arranged in from 1 to 3 compact whorls, purplish, from which the bright blue corolla extends. This plant blooms from March to June. Chia seeds were extensively eaten by the Indians, who obtained them by shaking the dried flower heads. Common in dry, open areas, below 5000 feet.

Saxifraga californica, Saxifrage: this plant has basal leaves arising from a short, erect caudex (i. e., a woody base). Leaves are roundish with a scalloped margin, green, and covered with hair. Flowers are held aloft on 4 to 12 inch stems; flowering occurs between February and June. Common on shaded, often grassy banks, below 5000 feet. It will thrive best a moist rock garden. It prefers light shade, but it can tolerate full sun. It requires good drainage as it is rapidly rotting in soggy soil; however, it can't tolerate drought.

Sphaeralcea ambigua, Desert-Mallow or Desert-Hollyhock: a perennial herb with a woody crown and woody lower stems. The stems are erect or ascending, to 3 feet tall. Leaves are thick, white, and very scalloped. It flowers mostly from March to June, but at other times as well. The blooms are orange-red and at the height of this bloom, this plant is stunning. It is drought tolerant and requires a sandy soil in a location with plenty of sun and heat. During the first summer after planting, periodic watering is essential. It will look good in the middle of a mixed border and it's unusual flower color will contrast well with bright yellow and blue-purple flowers. Unfortunately, it is unlikely to thrive in a coastal garden and is short-lived in cultivation. Be sure to plant in a location with plenty of room. Dry rocky slopes and canyons, mostly below 4000 feet. Propagate by seeds.

Typha latifolia, Cattails: a perennial herb growing from a creeping rhizome, which is from 3 to 10 feet tall. Light green leaves are long and narrow. Flowers are green-brown to red-brown cylindrical spikes which appear in June and July, but may persist throughout the year.  A familiar plant which is good in ponds; however, it grows only in freshwater. It dies back yearly (during the winter), but then grows right back.

Urtica holosericea, Stinging Nettle: a perennial herb arising from underground rootstocks, which is from 3 to 10 feet tall. Stems are stout and bristly. Leaves are green and hairy. Flowers are not particularly distinctive. Low damp places, below 9000 feet.

Verbascum blattaria, Moth Mullein or Verbascum: biennial or perennial herbs.

Vinca major, Periwinkle: a naturalized trailing vine with blue spring floweers and dark green foliage.  Grows to 1 foot in most soils and in most light conditions.  Drought-
tolerant.

Woodwardia fimbriata, Chain Fern: a rather large fern with stout and erect or short and creeping woody rhizomes. The stems of this plant are in the form of a rosette of fern fronds, which grow to 9 feet in height. It is used extensively in landscaping throughout Southern California; it is excellent near a pool or brook, against a shaded wall, or in woodland gardens. It is capable of growing in shade or partial shade. Springy and boggy places in canyons, below 5000 feet. Also found in foothill areas such as Holy Jim Canyon. Ultimately, it will withstand neglect. It is slow to establish if dug from clumps; nursery stock is vigorous and rapid in growth.

Zauschneria californica  ssp. latifolia, California Fuchsia: an erect to decumbent perennial, often much branched, 1 to 3 feet tall. Leaves are green to grayish. Flowers are funnelform and scarlet, although pink and white cultivars are available and make a nice contrast with the red. Flowering occurs mostly between August and October, but may occur at other times of the year as well. It is valued because it does flower in the fall, which is a time when few California natives do flower. It is recommended for beddings, for the middle plant of a mixed border, and for covering dry slopes; it can also be used in a rock garden. However, it has a tendency to become leggy, so plant individuals close together and pinch back the young stems to develop compact, well branched individuals. It prefers a light soil and full sun, where it will grow rapidly. In fact, it will thrive in the heat. It is drought tolerant once established, but will require the removal of the old branches. It is attractive to hummingbirds. One danger with using this plant is that as it spreads underground from branching, deep-seated rootstock, in some cultivated areas it can become obnoxious. Give it ample room in the garden, but with some containment as well. This plant will die back in the winter with spring renewal. Dry, mostly stony or gravelly places, below 6500 feet. Found in many areas of California. Propagate by readily germinating seeds, by cuttings, or by division.

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