Gardening sheets accent on annuals

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Garden info sheets for plants covered in Jan. 2014 talk on CA annual wildflowers

Garden info sheets for plants covered in Jan. 2014 talk on CA annual wildflowers

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  • 1. California Goldfields – Lasthenia californica ssp. californica (las-THEE-nee-uh kal-ee-FOR-ni-cuh) Family: Asteraceae (Sunflower Family) Southwestern U.S. from OR to to NM & south to Mexico; in CA, most areas west of Sierras & western Mojave Desert. Abundant in many vegetation types below 4500 feet elevation. Native to: annual wildflower mature height: < 1 ft. mature width: 1-2 ft. Herbaceous annual wildflower with narrow, slightly hairy leaves. Growth commences with winter rains. Plant dies after setting seeds. Growth characteristics: Spring bloomer (Feb-May, depending on rains). Flowers in bright golden-yellow sunflower heads, ~ ½ inch in diameter. Very showy, particularly when massed – as they are in nature. Plants of this species tend to all bloom at once, hence the name ‘Goldfields’. Fruits are small sunflower seeds that are enjoyed by seed-eating birds. Blooms/fruits: Uses in the garden: Lovely addition to the native wildflower garden or cottage garden. Excellent cover for native bulbs. Fine mixed with native grasses and around summer-dry shrubs. massed – creates a pool of golden yellow color in spring. Great in containers. Lovely Sensible substitute for: Non-native sunflowers. Attracts: Excellent habitat plant; birds love the seeds. Requirements: Element Sun Soil Water Fertilizer Other Requirement Full sun to part-sun. Any local soil – sand to clay; any local pH. Needs good winter/spring water; withhold water after blooming. None needed – but won’t hurt them. Inorganic (gravel) mulch or bare ground only. Very easy. Plant seed just before a rain storm to decrease bird consumption of seeds (or use a gravel mulch). Save some seed each year for re-planting. Re-seeds nicely. Management: Propagation: from seed: Easy. No pretreatment required. Plant/seed sources (see list for source numbers): 10, 13, 14, 16, 20 11/30/09 © Project SOUND
  • 2. Turkish rugging – Chorizanthe stacticoides (cor-ee-ZAN-thuh stat-ee-coe-EE-dees ) Family: Polygonaceae (Buckwheat Family) Native to: CA endemic with range from the foothills of Monterey County south to southern CA. Also on Catalina Island and coastal areas of Los Angeles, Orange and San Diego Counties; common in sandy/gravelly/rocky soils, in coastal scrub, mixed grassland and chaparral communities, pine-oak woodlands at elevations from sea level to about 4000 ft. annual wildflower mature height: 1 ft. mature width: 2-5 ft. Herbaceous annual wildflower with erect or reclining/spreading habit. Stems and leaves usually hairy, often quite so. Leaves spatula-shaped and mostly basal. Leaves dry before plants flower. Growth characteristics: Bloom season is variable, depending on spring rains; sometime between April & July in S. CA. Flowers are small (1/4 inch), pink to white, in loose to dense clusters at the ends of stems. Flowers are somewhat reminiscent of Statice, hence the scientific name stacticoides. The dense pink flower clusters and green of dying foliage suggest a ‘Turkish rug’. Extremely showy. Blooms/fruits: Uses in the garden: Plant has not been used much due to lack of seed sources. It would be wonderful in a mixed ‘color bowl’ with blue, purple or white wildflowers. Excellent annual for a dry garden, particularly as filler between pruned shrubs. Dramatic massed; good along pathways. Striking when viewed from above. Sensible substitute for: Non-native pink-flowered annuals; statice Attracts: Excellent habitat plant: provides pollen, nectar and seeds for food. Requirements: Element Sun Soil Water Fertilizer Other Requirement Full sun to light shade. Well-drained soils best; any local pH including alkali. Adequate water in winter/spring. Taper off in April. None needed; will not hurt plants and good idea for container plants. No mulch or gravel mulch (best). Management: Supplement winter rains if needed. Propagation: from seed: no pre-treatment needed. Let re-seed naturally or collect dried flowers & seeds in summer (no need to separate tiny seeds from chaff – like any buckwheat). Plant/seed sources (see list for source numbers): 19 1/1/14 © Project SOUND
  • 3. *Desert Candle – Caulanthus inflatus (kaw-LAN-thus in-FLAY-tus) Family: Brassicaceae (Mustard Family) Native to: Most common in Mojave Desert, Antelope Valley. Also in Sierra foothills, Transverse Ranges of S. CA; open sandy plains and washes/slopes in creosote bush scrub, valley grassland and joshua tree woodland communities between 2000' and 5000' elevation. annual wildflower mature height: 1-2 ft. mature width: 1-2 ft. Unusual herbaceous annual with erect habit. Conspicuous hollow, swollen yellow stem makes it look like a candle – hence the common name. Leaves basal, 2-3 inches long. Growth characteristics: Blooms in spring – anytime from Mar. to May depending on precipitation. Flowers occur along the inflated stem – clustered particularly at the top, which is typical for Mustard Family. Flowers are small, with four reddish-purple sepals and whitish petals. Plant is really unique. Fruit is a dry, elongated ‘pod’ that splits when dry, releasing seeds. Blooms/fruits: Uses in the garden: Most often used in desert-themed gardens, but appropriate for others. Makes a unique specimen plant in containers or in beds. Very showy en mass, as it often occurs in nature. Nice upright accent in a garden featuring blue, purple of pink-red flowers. Excellent for insect pollinators such as native bees, pollinator flies and others. Young stems are edible (cooked). Sensible substitute for: Non-native annuals. Attracts: Excellent pollinator & bird habitat: provides nectar, pollen and seeds for food. Requirements: Element Sun Soil Water Fertilizer Other Requirement Full sun. Well-drained – sandy or rocky best; any local pH. Needs good winter/spring water; supplement if needed. Taper off when buds show. None. None or gravel mulch. Management: Difficult to germinate, but may re-seed just fine. Propagation: from seed: ? needs smoke treatment with stored seeds. Plant/seed sources (see list for source numbers): 16, 19, 30, 38, 46 1/1/14 © Project SOUND
  • 4. * Douglas’ Meadowfoam – Limnanthes douglasii (lim-NAN-thees doug-LASS-ee-eye) Family: Limnanthaceae (Meadowfoam Family) Native to: Western U.S. including N. CA. Grows in wet places including wet meadows, edges of vernal pools, ephemeral streams, valley grassland and foothill woodlands. Annual wildflower height: 6-12 in. mature width: Low, mounded spreading annual that reproduces freely from seed. Leaves lobed. Growth characteristics: 8-10 in. Blooms/fruits: Mar-May. Dark yellow center with white, pink or crème outer-petal. Flowers are showy and sweetly-scented. Uses in the garden: sweet-scented, showy flowers, so place where they can be enjoyed. Looks nice in rock gardens, or as an edging or border plant. Also good as ground cover. Plant in vegetable garden to attract beneficial insects. Great as ground cover or in the front of mixed beds or naturalized areas. Also does well in containers. Charming, old-fashioned look. Sensible substitute for: non-native annual wildflowers. Attracts: many types of native bees and other insect pollinators. Requirements: Element Sun Soil Water Fertilizer Other Requirement Prefers full sun Any well-drained; can tolerate alkali pH Prefers cool, moist soils Low requirement; no added fertilizer needed Gravel or no mulch Management: self-seeds freely. Cut off seed heads if you don’t want it to naturalize. Propagation: from seed: fall to spring. fairly easy. Let pods ripen on plant. Sow seeds in prepared bed from May be slow to germinate. Plant/seed sources (see list for source numbers): 5 * California native plant but not native to Western L.A. county 2/16/11 © Project SOUND
  • 5. *White Meadowfoam – Limnanthes alba (lim-NAN-thus AL-buh ) Family: Limnanthaceae (Meadowfoam Family) Northern & Central CA in Great central Valley and surrounding foothills; wetlands and moist spots like edges of vernal pools, ephemeral streams in Valley Grassland, Foothill Woodland, Yellow Pine Forest plant communities. Native to: annual wildflower mature height: 1-2 ft. mature width: 1-2 ft. California endemic wildflower with erect or mounded habit. Leaves are usually divided into several lobes. Plant medium green, though stems may be red-tinged in hot conditions. Growth characteristics: Blooms in spring – generally Feb-April but may be later. Flowers cup-shaped with five petals. Petals are white, fading to pink, with distinctive veining. A very pretty white flower that’s attractive to native bees including bumblebees. Sweetly scented. Seeds are pressed to produce Meadowfoam oil used in cosmetics. Blooms/fruits: Uses in the garden: Most often used in seasonally moist areas like rain gardens, seasonal swales, etc. Good under birdbath, near fountain. Fabulous swathed. Provides a nice white accent in mixed flower beds or in pots and planters. Good choice for cottage garden, pollinator garden, rock garden or for edging pathways. Grow near/in vegetable garden to attract pollinators. Sensible substitute for: Non-native white-flowering annuals. Attracts: Excellent pollinator habitat; also provides seeds for birds. Requirements: Element Sun Soil Water Fertilizer Other Requirement Full sun best. Any local; any local pH. Needs moist soil until after flowering is completed – then let soils dry out. Not needed, but fine. Keep well-watered until flowering decreases – sensitive to drought. For good seed production, decrease water gradually during flowering season. Let plants reseed, or gather seeds and store in cool, dry place. Management: Propagation: from seed: easy; required no pre-treatment. Plant/seed sources (see list for source numbers): 5 12/29/13 © Project SOUND
  • 6. *Monterey Centaury – Zeltnera (Centaury) muehlenbergii (zelt-NAIR-uh mull-en-BERGE-ee-eye ) Family: Gentianaceae (Gentian Family) Northwestern North America from British Columbia to N.& central CA coastal and foothill areas; common in winter-moist open areas in Sagebrush Scrub, Redwood Forest, Mixed Evergreen Forest, Northern Oak Woodland, Foothill Woodland, Valley Grassland, Northern Juniper Woodland. Native to: annual wildflower mature height: 1-3 ft. mature width: 1-3 ft. Herbaceous annual wildflower. Erect, slender, often with branching stems. Leaves oval to oblong, simple, opposite. Foliage is fairly unremarkable. Growth characteristics: Blooms in late spring – April to July, depending on weather. Flowers are bright pink or magenta (occasionally white), funnel-shaped with 5 simple petals. Flowers are in small clusters, on short flowering stems, mostly at the ends of branches. Very showy in bloom! Flowers have an old-fashioned appeal typical for the gentians. Fruit a dry, 2-chambered capsule. Blooms/fruits: Uses in the garden: Lovely annual wherever used. Use in pots for a splash of seasonal color. Pair with blue, purple, pink and white wildflowers for a spectacular spring show. Good choice for native grassland planting. Would work well in a rain garden or seasonal swale, around fountains, bird baths, etc. Native peoples used an infusion of the plant to treat constipation. Sensible substitute for: Non-native pink flowers. Attracts: Good habitat plant: provides nectar and seeds for food. Requirements: Element Sun Soil Water Fertilizer Other Requirement Full sun (best). Any, including clay; any local pH. Needs moist ground in winter/spring; taper off as plants flower. Not needed, but not harmful. No mulch – or use an inorganic gravel mulch. Be sure ground remains moist prior to blooming. Let plants re-seed naturally or collect seeds from dry capsules and store in cool, dry place. Management: Propagation: from seed: easy Plant/seed sources (see list for source numbers): 19 12/29/13 © Project SOUND
  • 7. Charming Centaury – Zeltnera (Centaurium) venustum ssp abramsonii (sen-TORE-ee-um ven-OOS-tum) Family: Gentianaceae (Gentian Family) Foothills of N. CA mountains, southwestern CA & Mojave desert, Santa Monica Mtns ; common on dry slopes and flats in coastal sage scrub and chaparral, grassland, woodland and forest. Native to: annual wildflower mature height: 1-2 ft. mature width: 1-2 ft. Simple erect annual with narrow, pale-green leaves. Looks like a garden plant. Growth characteristics: Blooms late spring to summer (May to Jul-Aug). Flowers are bright pink with white & yellow center, solitary at ends of branches. Flowers have lovely colors and are trumpet shaped with spreading petals. Very showy. Blooms/fruits: Uses in the garden: Most effective massed in flowers beds or pots. Can be used to give a touch of color in the fronts of beds, along wall or walks, in rock gardens. native grasses. Would be great in pots & planters. Great with other wildflowers and Sensible substitute for: Non-native gentians, carnations. Attracts: Good bird habitat: provides seeds. Requirements: Element Sun Soil Water Fertilizer Other Requirement Full sun to light shade Any local texture, pH Requires some spring/summer water (Zone 2 or 2-3); no water after flowering to encourage seed set. none Management: Probably easy. Needs adequate water until starts to flower. Propagation: from seed: in pots or prepared ground in spring. Plant/seed sources (see list for source numbers): 8 12/29/13 © Project SOUND
  • 8. *Large-flower Linanthus – Leptosiphon (Linanthus) grandiflorus (lep-toe-SY-fon gran-dih-FLOR-us ) Family: Polemoniaceae (Phlox Family) Native to: North & Central CA coast to Santa Barbara Co.; uncommon in open woods & sandy soils below 3500 ft. Full extent of original range is unclear. annual wildflower mature height: 1-2 ft. mature width: 1-2 ft. Herbaceous annual that is short and mounded along immediate coast and taller in the garden setting. Stems hairy, often many-branched above. Leaves almost needle-like with narrow sections; in whorls around the stem. Plants often grow in dense colonies in wild. Growth characteristics: Blooms in spring – usually Apr-July. Flowers are adorable – shaped like open funnels with 5 fused petals. Color white to pale lilac-pink; many petals are white near center and colored at edges. Flowers look like a garden phlox – clustered at tops of stems. Sweetly fragrant. Plants will bloom through summer if given some supplemental water. Blooms/fruits: Uses in the garden: Most often used as in nature – in swathes or clusters. Wonderful in pots, even in hanging baskets. Used in flowering beds throughout California. Lovely in rock gardens or cascading over a low wall. Plant in vegetable garden or near fruit trees to attract pollinators. Makes a nice cut flower. Plant near a seating area or along paths to enjoy fragrance. Naturalizes well. Sensible substitute for: Non-native phlox. Attracts: Excellent habitat plant: provides nectar and seeds for pollinators, birds. Requirements: Element Sun Soil Water Fertilizer Other Requirement Full sun to part-shade. Likes a well-drained soil – excellent for sandy – but adaptable; any local pH. Adequate moisture during growth; none or occasional during bloom season. None needed in ground; fine if grown in containers. Bare ground or gravel mulch is best. Supplement water if needed in dry years. Collect seed as capsules begin to open – or let the plants re-seed naturally. Plant is well-adapted to gardens. Management: Propagation: from seed: easy; no pre-treatment required. Plant/seed sources (see list for source numbers): 5, 8, 10, 11, 13, 14, 19, 45 1/29/12 © Project SOUND
  • 9. *Red Ribbons – Clarkia concinna (KLAR-kee-uh kon-kin-uh) Family: Onagraceae (Willowherb Family) Native to: Northwestern CA from Santa Clara Co. north. Also Northern Sierra foothills; drier areas of Mixed Evergreen Forest, Northern Oak Woodland, Douglas-Fir Forest, coastal scrub to 3500 ft. annual wildflower mature height: 1-2 ft. Erect, herbaceous annual wildflower. Stems slender – may be red-tinged. medium green, more rounded than other Clarkias. Growth characteristics: mature width: 1-2 ft. Leaves lance-shaped, Blooms in spring or summer – Apr-July. Flowers are unique, even among the showy Clarkias. Flowers are dark to medium pink. The deeply incised petals with their white streaks give this species a delicate appearance. flowers have four looping sepals of red or dark pink which look like loops of silk ribbon. Plants are show-stoppers – popular throughout the world. Blooms/fruits: Uses in the garden: Commonly used in flower beds, often in mixed beds with cottage garden look. Plants are brilliant when massed. Pretty choice for pots and hanging baskets. Plants do well in part-shade, so useful under trees, north sides of walls, etc. Pair with other Clarkias, Baby Blueeyes, and perennials like Eriophyllum lanatum, Monardella villosa. Seeds can be parched and eaten. Sensible substitute for: Non-native annual wildflowers. Attracts: Excellent bird habitat: provides cover and seeds for food. Attracts native pollinators. Requirements: Element Sun Soil Water Fertilizer Other Requirement Best in part-shade. Well-drained best, but adaptable; any local pH. Needs good winter/spring moisture; supplement if needed. Taper off after blooming Not needed but OK. Best with no mulch or organic (gravel) mulch. Easy. Don’t thin plants – better blooms if crowded (as in nature). Plants re-seed well (or gather seeds by cutting plants when pods begin to open; invert in paper bag & let dry). Management: Propagation: from seed: easy. Plant/seed sources (see list for source numbers): 5, 8, 11, 16, 30, 31, 46 1/1/14 © Project SOUND
  • 10. *Mountain Collomia/Large-flowered Phlox – Collomia grandiflora (kol-LOH-mee-uh gran-dih-FLOR-uh ) Family: Polemoniaceae (Phlox Family) Western North America from British Columbia to AZ, including much of CA (west of Sierras). Locally in San Gabriel, Liebre Mtns; dry streambeds, open and shaded slopes, in many plant communities < 8000 ft (Yellow Pine Forest, Red Fir Forest, Lodgepole Forest, Subalpine Forest, Foothill Woodland, Chaparral, Valley Grassland). Native to: annual wildflower mature height: 1-3 ft. mature width: 1 ft. Herbaceous annual. Stems erect , robust, hairy and often un-branched. Leaves medium green, lance-shaped to linear, alternate; leaf margins may be smooth or serrated Plant has a long taproot. Growth characteristics: Blooms in late spring (Apr-June) in our area. Flowers are spectacular: up to 1 inch diameter and white or more usually salmon- or pale orange-colored. Flowers are in dense clusters at the tops of the stems. Individual flowers are trumpet-shaped, with 5 fused petals and distinctive blue pollen. Fruits a dry capsule with sticky seeds. Blooms/fruits: Uses in the garden: Mostly used as an ornamental in flower beds throughout the world. Combine with blue or purple flowers for a stunning effect! Excellent in pollinator garden with other annuals. Reseeds well on bare ground or areas with inorganic mulch – good for naturalizing. Sensible substitute for: Non-native orange-flowered plants. Attracts: Excellent habitat plant: provides pollen and seeds for food. Requirements: Element Sun Soil Water Fertilizer Other Requirement Full sun to part-shade. Most local soils; any local pH. Adequate winter/spring moisture; then dry to set seeds. Not needed; not harmful No mulch – or use gravel mulch. Supplement water if needed. Harvest seeds when capsules begin to open (they pop open when dry, expelling seed) or let re-seed naturally. Remove dead plants after seeds are gone. Management: Propagation: from seed: easy; no pre-treatment Plant/seed sources (see list for source numbers): 19, 46, commercial seed sources 12/29/13 © Project SOUND