Beautiful butterflies 2013 - plant info sheets


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Plant information Sheets for July, 2013 lecture 'Beautiful Butterflies' for the native plant gardening series 'Out of the Wilds and Into Your Garden'. This series features California native plants suitable for western Los Angeles County.

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Beautiful butterflies 2013 - plant info sheets

  1. 1. * Pink Fairyduster – Calliandra eriophylla (cal-lee-ANN-druh ear-ee-AW-fil-luh ) Family: Juncaceae (Rush Family) Native to: Sonoran Desert of Baja CA, north to CA and east to TX. San Diego, Imperial & Riverside Counties; dry, gravelly slopes & mesas, sandy washes at 2000-5000 feet elevation (600-1500 m). Growth characteristics: perennial shrub mature height: 2-5 ft. mature width: 3-6 ft. Woody perennial shrub that is drought deciduous in nature, may be evergreen in garden setting. Upright to sprawling habit. Densely branched. Leaves bright to blue-green, compound with small leaflets. Moderate growth rate; spreads via rhizomes. More vigorous with added water. Blooms/fruits: Blooms in spring – often as early as Feb/Mar but may be Apr/May. Flower clusters with light pink to reddish-purple stamens look like a miniature duster. Very showy – can literally cover the plant in fluffy pink puffballs that attract hummingbirds & large butterflies. Flowers have a strong musky scent at twilight. Fruits are dehiscent pods - open explosively, dispersing the seeds. Uses in the garden: Good choice for informal hedge. Does well on slopes for erosion control. Nice sized shrub for water-wise and desert-themed gardens. Good, low-maintenance plant for hot parkways. Excellent habitat potential. Good accent plant – very exotic-looking when in bloom. Sensible substitute for: Non-native small shrubs. Attracts: Excellent habitat plant: provides cover, nectar and seeds. Attracts butterflies, hummingbirds, ground foraging birds. Requirements: Element Requirement Sun Full sun to part shade. Soil Well-drained soils best; any local pH. Water None needed (very drought tolerant) but looks better with occasional water (Zone 1-2 or even 2 is fine) Fertilizer None needed. Other Inorganic mulch best Management: Tip-prune to increase fullness if desired. Light pruning to shape in late spring after flowering. Other than that, minimal management needed. Very pest-free. Propagation: from seed: hot water treatment; easy by cuttings: ? Plant/seed sources (see list for source numbers): 1, 3, 8, 11, 13, 28 5/2/11 * Native to CA but not to Western L.A. Co. © Project SOUND
  2. 2. * Roving Sailor – Maurandella antirrhiniflora (maw-ran-DEL-luh an-tee-rin-IF-lor-uh ) Family: Scrophulariaceae (Figwort/Snapdragon Family) Native to: Southwestern deserts from Texas to S. CA to N. Mexico. Locally in Providence Mtns, San Bernardino Co.; growing on hillsides, slopes, desert washes and flats, climbing over other shrubs. Growth characteristics: half-woody perennial vine mature length: 6-10 ft. Semi-evergreen vine with delicate, mostly herbaceous stems that twine among surrounding shrubs. Leaves are dark-green, arrow-shaped, somewhat ivy-like. Delicate-looking plant. Blooms/fruits: Bloom season depends on available moisture, from Mar-Sept. Snapdragon flowers are purple, lilac, blue-purple or rose-red blooms with white or yellow throats appear on slender stalks. Really showing in an old-fashioned way. Fruit is a capsule with many seeds. Uses in the garden: Excellent choice for trellis, lattice or arbor-bench – plant close by so you can enjoy its delicate beauty. Also nice for mixed hedgerow, climbing through native shrubs, or even as a groundcover. Good habitat plant (see below) – hummingbirds love it! Would be pretty in a hanging basket or container. Sensible substitute for: Non-native flowering vines. Attracts: Buckeye butterfly (Junonia coenia) eats foliage for larval food. Nectar attracts hummingbirds & butterflies. Good habitat choice. Requirements: Element Requirement Sun Full sun to part-shade. Heat-tolerant. Soil Well-drained; any local pH. Water Supplemental water extends bloom season (Zone 1 in wild; 1-2 to 2 in garden) Fertilizer None. Other Tolerates salty soils Management: In colder climates it dies back in winter. Prune back to train, but may not need it. Reseeds well – remove seedlings if desired, or let it naturalize. Propagation: from seed: easy, no treatment by cuttings: ?? usually grown from seed Plant/seed sources (see list for source numbers): 2, 13 2/18/11 * CA native plant but not native to Western L.A. county © Project SOUND
  3. 3. * Desert Mallow – Sphaeralcea ambigua (sfeer-AL-see-uh am-BIG-yoo-uh) Family: Malvaceae (Mallow Family) Native to: Southwestern deserts & desert mountains. In CA, in both Mojave & Sonoran Deserts; on sandy or rocky soils, mostly in washes, canyons or on dry slopes. Growth characteristics: perennial sub-shrub mature height: 3-4 ft. mature width: 2-3 ft. Lovely, mounded evergreen sub-shrub with typical mallow leaves & other features. Many slender, semi-woody stems. Leaves are gray-green, covered with hairs (allergenic – wear gloves when handling). Airy, looks like a garden plant. Fast growing. Short-lived, but re-seeds well. Blooms/fruits: Blooms mostly in spring (Mar-June) but year-round with some water. Flowers range from white to pink-purple, but most are apricot to red-orange. One of the largest flowers of native Globe-mallows. Flowers look like small Hibiscus flowers on Hollyhock-like stems. Uses in the garden: Makes lovely addition to cottage garden or other garden that features flowering plants. Excellent choice for water-wise garden, desert garden or rock garden. Works great on dry slopes and fine in hot, sunny areas. Fine in containers. Not for the immediate coast (too foggy). Sensible substitute for: Non-native Mallows, Hollyhocks, other small flowering shrubs. Attracts: Excellent habitat: plant : provides cover and seeds for bird food and nectar for insect pollinators. Larval food source for Western Checkered White butterfly. Requirements: Element Requirement Sun Full sun – even areas with hot, reflected sun Soil Sandy or rocky; must be well-drained; any local pH, including alkali Water None needed (Zone 1), but looks better (and flowers longer) with occasional water (Zone 2) Fertilizer None needed; light fertilizer won’t kill it. Other Management: Low maintenance plant. Shear back to 6 inches in fall to rejuvenate (some do this every year). Short-lived but re-seeds well (dead-head to prevent reseeding). Propagation: from seed: easy in fall; soak older seed overnight by cuttings: difficult Plant/seed sources (see list for source numbers): 1, 3, 8, 10, 11, 13, 14, 16, 20, 24, 28 7/3/13 * CA native plant but not native to Western L.A. county © Project SOUND
  4. 4. Seaside Heliotrope – Heliotropium curassavicum var. oculatum (heel-ee-oh-TROPE-ee-um cure-uh-SAH-vi-kum ah-kew-LAY-tum) Family: Asteraceae (Sunflower Family) Native to: Southwestern U.S.; along coast and in desert areas that have summer-dry alkaline soils. Growth characteristics: herbaceous perennnial mature height: 6-20 in. mature width: 4-8 ft. Low, bluish green, fleshy perennial - stems branch from the base, are erect at first but are soon prostrate, with the tips ascending. Dies back in fall. Forms colonies that spread by creeping rhizomes. Blooms/fruits: blooms Apr-Fall. ; White to bluish, tiny flowers in long curved sprays. Centers fading to green or purple. Flowers have look very sweet, old-fashioned. Uses in the garden: As a groundcover; for rehabilitating disturbed areas. Good along coast and in Copastal Preairie areas. Excellent bee and butterfly plant. Nice in large pots, planters where they can drape over the edges. Excellent in sandy soils. Do not eat raw or use in herbal teas – toxic. Sensible substitute for: non-native perennial/annual groundcovers. Attracts: bees; butterflies (particularly Skippers and Lady’s). This is one of our best nector sources for butterflies and other insect pollinators. Requirements: Element Requirement Sun Full sun to partial shade (flowers less in shade) Soil Fine-medium texture best; alkali soils best Water Medium water use – give occasional summer water; tolerates seasonal flooding Fertilizer None required Other Tolerates salty, alkali soils; seaside conditions Management: little required. May become invasive with abundant summer water. Competes well with non-native weeds. Propagation: from seed: moderately easy by cuttings: easy from spring to fall Plant/seed sources (see list for source numbers): 1, 2, 6, 10, 16 7/3/13 © Project SOUND
  5. 5. California Figwort (Bee Plant) – Scrophularia californica ssp. floribunda (skrof-yu-LARE-ee-a ka-li-FOR-ni-ka flor-i-BUN-da) Family: Scrophulariaceae (Figwort family) Native to: Much of coastal CA from LA Co. to Canada. Also San Gabriel & western Sierra Nevadas; usually in moist (but occasionally more dry) places in coastal sage scrub, chaparral, oak woodlands and along roads. Fairly common. Growth characteristics: clumping perennial mature height: 3-6 ft. mature width: 2-3 ft. Fast-growing tall, upright perennial. Semi-deciduous in moister areas; dies back to ground in summer-dry conditions. Leaves dark-green, succulent-looking, incised – very attractive. Square red stems. Spreading. Blooms/fruits: Blooms Mar.-May in S. Bay. Flowers small, dark red, distinctive in shape. Flowers are interesting but not really showy. Fruit is a dry tulip-shaped capsule with small dark seeds. Uses in the garden: Most useful for its attractive foliage and as a habitat plant for attracting native bees. Good in an old-fashioned garden, cottage garden or mixed native bed. Fine in contained areas, large containers, narrow borders. Dried flower stalks are interesting in floral arrangements. Takes regular garden water and does well with others of like needs. Sensible substitute for: Non-native foxgloves, Calceolaria, Torenia. Other perennial foliage plants. Attracts: Excellent bird habitat: provides nectar for hummingbirds and seeds for food. Nectar attracts many native pollinators including bees and butterflies. Caterpillar food for Common Checkerspot and Buckeye. Requirements: Element Requirement Sun Full sun to nearly full shade; does better with some shade in hot gardens. Soil Any texture from sand to clay Water Semi-dry to regular irrigation Fertilizer None needed, but can stand a light fertilizer or (better) organic mulch Other Management: Little management needed; cut back after collecting seeds. Will spread with regular watering, but easy to control. Propagation: from seed: cold treatment may enhance germination. Plant winter-spring in pots or in prepared beds. Barely cover the small seeds. by divisions: yes Plant/seed sources (see list for source numbers): 1, 5, 8, 10-13, 16, 20, 24 12/14/10 © Project SOUND
  6. 6. Ashy-leaf Buckwheat – Eriogonum cinereum (air-ee-OG-oh-num sin-AIR-ee-um) Family: Polygonaceae (Buckwheat Family) Native to: Coastal CA from Santa Barbara to San Pedro, including Channel Islands; bluffs & dunes along the coast & on slopes & ridges a bit further inland. Growth characteristics: perennial sub-shrub mature height: 3-5 ft. mature width: 3-6 ft. Spreading semi-evergreen shrub or sub-shrub (woody & herbaceous). Plants is many-branched, with gray-green to white foliage. Leaves are 1-2 inches long, hairy beneath, with undulating edges. Blooms/fruits: Usually blooms June to Oct. in our area, but may bloom earlier or later. Clusters of light pink flowers on elongated flowering stems. Very showy and long-blooming. Fruits are dry capsules – showy brown in fall. Uses in the garden: Often used as a specimen plant because of its attractive gray-green foliage and showy blooms. Excellent ground cover, particularly along the coast. Fine on slopes. Excellent habitat plant. Would do fine in planters and large pots. Should be used more, particularly in sandy coastal gardens. Sensible substitute for: Non-native gray-foliage shrubs. Attracts: Excellent habitat plant: provides nectar and pollen for native pollinators including bees, butterflies and others. Also provides cover and seeds for bird and small animal food. Requirements: Element Requirement Sun Full sun best on coast; some shade in hottest gardens Soil Any, from sandy to clay, as long as it is well drained; any local pH Water Very drought tolerant once established. Looks best will occasional summer water, but let soil dry out between waterings. Fertilizer None required Other Tolerates seaside conditions, alkali and moderately salty soils Management: Easy to grow in well-drained soils. Can be cut back to 6-8 inches from ground every few years to keep it bushy. Propagation: from seed: no treatment required by cuttings: probably, semi-softwood in spring Plant/seed sources (see list for source numbers): 1-3, 8, 10, 13, 14, 16, 20, 24 7/3/13 © Project SOUND
  7. 7. Hairy Gumplant – Grindelia hirsutula (grin-DEL-ee-uh her-SUIT-yoo-luh) Family: Asteraceae (Sunflower Family) Native to: West coast of N. America from S. CA to British Columbia; coastal plains and foothills, usually on slopes or sea bluffs, in sandy or gravelly soils. Growth characteristics: herbaceous perennial mature height: 1-3 ft. mature width: 2-3 ft. Herbaceous perennial with numerous stems from a single, slightly woody root. Leaves are lance- shaped, red-green to gray green depending on variety and conditions. Foliage may be hairy, aromatic. More delicate & ‘garden-like’ than other Grindelias. Dies back in fall. Blooms/fruits: Profuse blooms in late spring/summer. Flowers are golden-yellow, typical ‘sunflower-type’ heads. Very showy in bloom – bright yellow color spot. Uses in the garden: Excellent choice for cottage garden or any other garden featuring flowers. Good staple at back of flowering beds, combined with other summer-blooming native perennials, grasses. Good for xeriscaping – very tough plant. Yellow/green natural dye from flowers. Native Californians used leaves/teas to treat skin sores, itching, bronchitis. Sensible substitute for: Non-native summer-flowering perennials like gazanias, daisies. Attracts: Excellent habitat plant. Nectar attracts many insects; birds eat the seeds. Requirements: Element Requirement Sun Full sun best Soil Sandy soils best; ok with other well-drained soils; any local pH Water Quite drought resistant. Looks better with a little summer water (Zone 2). Decrease water in late summer/fall. Fertilizer None needed. Other Management: Deadhead flowers if desired to improve appearance. Cut back dead stems in fall. Easy. Will re-seed, but easy to remove unwanted seedlings. Propagation: from seed: easy with fresh seed in fall/winter by cuttings: ?? Plant/seed sources (see list for source numbers): 2, 10, 13 7/3/13 © Project SOUND