Articles in Category: Native

Ribes sanguineum 'King Edward'

on Sunday, 16 April 2017. Posted in Attracts Pollinators, Native, Shade Plants, Shrubs, Drought Tolerant, Flowering Plants

King Edward Red Flowering Currant

ribes-sanguineum

Flowering currants are at their best in late April with their cascades of flowers and scalloped leaves, but late fall and early spring is the best time to plant natives to get them established before the summer heat. 'King Edward' has darker pink flowers than the species but both attract hummingbirds, and then songbirds with the dark blue berries that follow the flowers. They are a great native that can take dry shade under an oak or other large tree.  Morning sun or dappled shade is best and don't overdo the summer water, they are used to summer drought and winter wet.  Flowering currants grow quickly and have a lovely open habit that mixes well with other plants.  They can get at least 4-5' tall and wide.  We also have the yellow blooming species- Ribes aureum, whose flowers seem even more scented and has vibrant red/orange fall color.  Flowering currants are great as part of a mixed screen or hedge in dappled light.

Zauschneria (Epilobium) cana

on Sunday, 14 August 2016. Posted in Attracts Pollinators, Native, Perennial, Ground Cover, Drought Tolerant, Flowering Plants

California Fuchsia

zauschneria-plant-of-week

The California Fuchsia is one of the most drought tolerant, heat tolerant, beautiful perennials you can grow.  We're not sure why this California native is not used more- the hard to pronounce name, the two Genus names (we like to use Zauschneria), that fact that you can kill it with kindness, perhaps?  It has been putting on a show for us and the hummingbirds in the garden since mid July and seems to be going strong until we get a severe frost in late October, maybe November.  The trumpet-shaped, hot orange flowers bloom continously and are not ugly as the fade out- they just drop off, no dead brown petals like so many perennials or even annuals.  So there is no deadheading or cleaning up.  The unreal orange color of the blooms is set off by the lovely silvery gray foliage that fits perfectly into a drought tolerant garden. 

Mahonia spp.

on Monday, 30 November 2015. Posted in Winter Interest, Berries Attract Wildlife, Native, Evergreen, Shade Plants, Deer Resistant, Shrubs, Drought Tolerant, Flowering Plants

Oregon Grape

mahonia_compacta

Oregon grape may seem too common to mention but it has so many merits that it is a go to plant for many situations in the Rogue Valley.  Being a native plant, Mahonias can take our winter wet and summer dry and can be very drought tolerant once established.  Their thick leathery leaves and spiny edges also make them unpalatable to deer.  Most species of Oregon Grape are evergreen but still turn a rainbow of colors in the fall and winter giving them more interest than the average evergreen shrub.  The spikes of cheerful yellow flowers emerge early in spring and turn to blue-black fruit that are edible but more appealing to birds than humans.  Most varieties grow by underground runners and make a nice colony so best to give them room to shine. 

The ones we use the most in the Rogue Valley are:

Amsonia hubrichtii

on Monday, 25 August 2014. Posted in Attracts Pollinators, Native, Fall Color, Perennial, Deer Resistant, Flowering Plants

Threadleaf Blue Star

amsonia closeupWe are excited to start growing and offering this harder to find and low maintenance perennial.  Threadleaf Blue Star has a long season of interest, beginning with starry sky blue flowers, fading to white in late spring followed by wispy light green foliage that turns a gorgeous golden yellow in fall. This SE American native is one of the longest lasting perennials for fall color.  It does go winter dormant but the dried foliage can persist through winter adding interest that combines well with the seedheads and blades of ornamental grasses.   Amsonia gets about 3' tall and 3-4' wide and requires regular watering to look its best but can tolerate some drought.  Full to part sun is ideal and give it at least two years to really show off.    We are anxious to try it out in deer country, because most sources say it is deer resistant and rabbit resistant.  So come on Rogue Valley, let's try it out!   Use it on masse, as a cut flower, or butterfly and bee attractor.

 

Fantastic fall color of Amsonia with Miscanthus and Buddleia 'Blue Chip'- Photo from University of Missouri

 

Amsonia-SchJourlCtYd-sm

Rhamnus californica

on Wednesday, 14 March 2012. Posted in Good for Screening, Winter Interest, Berries Attract Wildlife, Native, Evergreen, Shrubs, Drought Tolerant

California Coffeeberry

rhamnus_californica

Coffeeberry is a tough candidate for that hard to fill niche of an evergreen native shrub and the bonus is that it attracts birds, is very drought tolerant and deer resistant, fire resistant, and even makes a good hedge or screen.  Coffeeberry is native from southern Oregon continuing south all the way into Baja and gets its name from the dark berries that change from red to almost black.  The flowers are inconspicuous but the birds definitely notice the berries.  Rhamnus makes a great hedge, usually growing at a medium rate to 6-8' tall and wide, with the potential to get larger in more woodland areas.  It has a more spreading, low habit when grown in coastal conditions.  Coffeeberry prefers full sun but can also be happy in part shade or a more wooded garden.  In the Rogue Valley it can tolerate the heat and most soils, although it preferes a sandy, well-draining soil. It is truly a xeriscape plant- once established, it can survive on no irrigation.  To keep it more fire resistant, a deep soak every two weeks is recommended.  The leaves are long and pointed and a matte green with a paler underside.  The named variety 'Eve Case'  has broader and brighter, green foliage and will stay a bit more compact at 4-8' wide and tall.  We have found it to be deer resistant in most situations, especially once established.  They may have a tendency to chew the new growth but will leave it alone when it gets some size.  If you haven't used natives before try out this low maintenance shrub to see how easy, attractive, and sustainable natives can be.