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Ranunculus californicus  California buttercup
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Ranunculus californicus

(California buttercup)

Cheerful harbinger of spring, this western native grows in vernally moist sites in a number of plant communities throughout California.  Easy to grow perennial,  sports bright green succulent foliage topped with slender stems 1 to 2 ft. tall and wide. A profusion of shiny, bright yellow blossoms bloom freely until soil dries out. Goes dormant with drought, returning in spring, often reseeding. Full sun to light shade. Excellent early pollen and nectar source, attractive to bees and other beneficials.
Ranunculus occidentalis  western buttercup
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Ranunculus occidentalis

(western buttercup)

Native to open woodlands, this buttercup often occurs under deciduous oaks and buckeyes or on edges of forests. Perennial, with basal foliage, the flower stems rise 12 to 20 inches with bright yellow shiny petals. Has been surprisingly adaptable. Does fine with moderate summer irrigation, where it stays evergreen and long blooming. Once established can be allowed to go summer dry, where it will go dormant after setting seed, and returning with the winter rains. 
Rhamnus alaternus 'Variegatus' variegated Italian buckthorn
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Rhamnus alaternus 'Variegatus'

(variegated Italian buckthorn)

A beautiful shrub with lovely variegated evergreen foliage growing 6 - 10 ft. or more tall and wide.An adaptable plant, it can be grown in full sun to light shade, given regular water to no summer water (once established) and is amenable to shaping and shearing as well as training into a single or multi-trunked tree. The flowers are small and hardly noticeable, it is grown for its form and first rate foliage.
Rhamnus (Frangula) californica  California coffeeberry
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Rhamnus (Frangula) californica

(California coffeeberry)

Description coming soon.
Rhamnus (Frangula) californica 'Ed Holm' dwarf California coffeeberry
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Rhamnus (Frangula) californica 'Ed Holm'

(dwarf California coffeeberry)

Prized by gardeners for it's low, dense habit and shiny, leathery leaves.  This special selection of coffeeberry was discovered along Skyline Dr. in the northern Santa Cruz Mountains.  Clusters of small, creamy flowers are produced from spring through fall and are followed by penny-sized, deep purple fruits.  Over time, 'Ed Holm' will reach a height of up to 3 ft. and a width up to 6 ft..  Plant in full sun to light shade.  Protect from the hot afternoon sun in hot areas and give moderate to infrequent irrigation.  The blossoms are a favorite of bees. 
Rhamnus (Frangula) californica 'Eve Case' California coffeeberry
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Rhamnus (Frangula) californica 'Eve Case'

(California coffeeberry)

This well known cultivar of coffeeberry was introduced to the trade in 1975 by Saratoga Horticultural Foundation. A handsome evergreen with broad leathery leaves growing to 6 ft. tall and wide, though mature specimens can reach 8 ft. or more tall under ideal circumstances. The small yellow-green flowers are not showy but attract an array of pollinators. The berries start out green and age to burgundy-black and are attractive to small mammals and birds. A larval food source for pale swallowtail butterfly. Adaptable, grows in sun to light shade. Drought tolerant but appreciates occasional summer water.
Rhamnus (Frangula) californica 'Leatherleaf' California coffeeberry
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Rhamnus (Frangula) californica 'Leatherleaf'

(California coffeeberry)

Another fine Roger Raiche selection, this coffeeberry cultivar is well worth growing. The leaves are particularly dark and broad with a mounding habit growing 5 - 6 ft. tall and wide. The tiny flowers attract a wide array of pollinators. Larval food source for pale swallowtail butterfly. The handsome fruits go green to red to black and are enjoyed by small mammals and birds. Plant in sun to light shade. Drought tolerant once established though occasional summer watering is helpful. An adaptable and useful shrub for both formal and naturalistic plantings.
Rhamnus (Frangula) californica 'Mound San Bruno' California coffeeberry
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Rhamnus (Frangula) californica 'Mound San Bruno'

(California coffeeberry)

Selected by Roger Raiche on San Bruno Mountain in San Mateo County, this is one of the most reliable coffeeberries. Grows 6 ft tall and wide, with narrow leaves and a compact habit. For full sun to part shade, will accept water, but is quite drought tolerant once established. Flowers are loved by pollinators, especially bees. A larval food source for the pale swallowtail butterfly. Provides black juicy fruit in the fall for thrushes, jays, mockingbirds, robins, bandtailed pigeon and purple finch. May grow to as much as 8 ft. tall with moderate water and good drainage in cooler areas.
Rhamnus (Frangula) californica 'Salt Point' California coffeeberry
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Rhamnus (Frangula) californica 'Salt Point'

(California coffeeberry)

A beautiful selection of our native coffeeberry from the northern Sonoma Coast featuring a very dense and mounding habit. Here at the nursery this cultivar has slowly grown to 6 ft. tall and wide. Provide full sun to partial shade and moderate to occasional water when established. Produces black, juicy fruits in the fall for thrushes, jays, mockingbirds, robins, bandtailed pigeon and purple finch. Flowers attractive to pollinators, especially bees. Used as a larval food source by the pale swallowtail butterfly.
Rhamnus (Frangula) californica 'Seaview' dwarf California coffeeberry
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Rhamnus (Frangula) californica 'Seaview'

(dwarf California coffeeberry)

This highly sought after selection of our native coffeeberry stays low and compact only reaching 2 – 3 ft tall and up to 6 ft wide. The tidy, deep green leaves form dense rosettes with small cream-colored flowers appearing from spring through summer. Deep purple “berries” form dense clusters in the summer and fall. Enjoys full sun to moderate shade and moderate to occasional water once established.  An excellent habitat plant for bees and birds.
Rhamnus (Frangula) californica - large, inland form  California coffeeberry
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Rhamnus (Frangula) californica - large, inland form

(California coffeeberry)

Handsome native evergreen shrub with small greenish-yellow flowers followed by showy dark-colored berries. Seed from this crop was collected from tall, upright shrubs on a hot inland site. Growing 8 ft. or more tall, coffeeberries thrive in full sun to light shade. They are drought tolerant once established, but would appreciate occasional deep summer waterings. A good choice for hedgerows and habitat gardens, coffeeberry provides food and nectar for a wide array of beneficial insects, birds and wildlife.
Rhamnus (Frangula) californica ssp. occidentalis  Western California coffeeberry
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Rhamnus (Frangula) californica ssp. occidentalis

(Western California coffeeberry)

Description coming soon!
Rhamnus (Frangula) californica ssp. tomentella  serpentine coffeeberry
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Rhamnus (Frangula) californica ssp. tomentella

(serpentine coffeeberry)

This distinctive species of coffeeberry features blue-grey leaves with velvety, silver undersides and grey, fuzzy stems. The somewhat open form grows 6 to 10 ft tall and wide. Clusters of small cream-colored flowers appear from winter through spring and are a favorite of bees. The deep purple fruits which follow are highly prized by birds. While native to serpentine soils, this coffeeberry should thrive anywhere with decent drainage. Provide full sun to light shade and give occasional irrigation once established. The grey stems contrast beautifully with the shiny, dark green leaves of Ceanothus ‘Yankee Point’. 
Rhamnus (Frangula) purshiana  cascara
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Rhamnus (Frangula) purshiana


Native to moist places from Mendocino County northwards and throughout the Sierra Nevadas, this medium sized deciduous tree is distinctive for its shiny, green leaves with strong venation. Ranges in height from 15 to 30 ft. tall. Bees are attracted to the clusters of small, cream-colored flowers and birds enjoy the dark purple berries which follow. Plant in riparian zones or in areas where it can receive regular moisture. Give full sun to part shade. Requires protection from the afternoon sun in the hottest areas.
Rhododendron macrophyllum  California rose-bay
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Rhododendron macrophyllum

(California rose-bay)

One of the glories of our coastal redwoods forests, this evergreen rhododendron features clusters of large flowers in the spring which can range in color from deep rose to pale pink. Native from the Big Sur Coast north to Washington. In the wild, this open branched, big leaved shrub can reach a height of 13 feet. Plants in the garden tend to be much smaller, not usually exceeding 8 feet with a slightly narrower width. While somewhat temperamental in cultivation, success can be achieved with dappled shade, well draining soil rich in organic matter and moderate to regular water. Deer resistant.
Rhododendron occidentale  western azalea
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Rhododendron occidentale

(western azalea)

A much sought after and admired native deciduous shrub found in moist places and stream banks in many plant communities throughout California.  Leafs out in the spring with bright green foliage on a shrubby framework 3-6 ft. or more tall and wide.  Glorious displays of fragrant azalea flowers in dense terminal clusters appear in late spring and can be pure white to pale pink often with yellow or orange markings.  Needs decent light to bloom well but appreciates light shade, acid soils and regular water. Deer resistant
Rhododendron occidentale x  'Irene Koster'
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Rhododendron occidentale x 'Irene Koster'

A beautiful hybrid Rhododendron involving our western azalea, introduced by a Dutch nursery in 1895. This is a deciduous shrub with massive displays of sweetly scented funnel-shaped blossoms in late spring. The large showy trusses have flower buds with dark-pink stripes that open to a light rose-pink with a splash of yellow-orange on it’s upper petals. Grows 6 -8 ft. tall by 4 - 6 ft. wide in part shade with regular to moderate watering. Prefers humus rich acidic soils with good drainage. The fragrant flowers attract an array of pollinators including butterflies. 
Rhus integrifolia  lemonade berry
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Rhus integrifolia

(lemonade berry)

This sturdy native shrub or small tree is highly valued for its evergreen foliage and as a source of food for birds, bees and butterflies. Round, serrated, leaves, flatter than those of the sugar bush, cover this plant from head to toe. In late winter to early spring, white to pink flower clusters emerge, followed by sticky, reddish fruits. Ranging in height and width from 4 to 20 ft., lemonade berry is very tolerant of pruning, either into a small tree or a low hedge. Cold hardy to about 20 degrees. Plant in full sun to part shade. Will be very drought tolerant once established. Fire resistant. Deer resistant.
Rhus ovata  sugar bush
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Rhus ovata

(sugar bush)

Handsome evergreen shrub native to dry slopes away from the coast in Southern California, Baja, and Arizona. A durable shrub thriving in hot, rocky conditions in full sun to part shade where it will be completely drought tolerant once established. Grows 4 - 10 ft. tall and wide. A profusion of dense flower clusters are rosy tinted in bud opening to white with a pinkish blush. Small reddish fruits follow that are coated with a sugary secretion that tastes lemony. Excellent subject for hot, dry inland conditions. Good for birds, bees and butterflies. Fire resistant. Deer resistant.
Rhus trilobata  basket bush
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Rhus trilobata

(basket bush)

An arching, mounding native shrub related to sugar bush and lemonade berry. Early spring brings a profusion of soft yellow flowers followed by orange-red fruits relished by wildlife. The leaves turn shades of yellow, orange and red in the fall. Plant in sun to light shade where it is drought, cold and heat tolerant. Useful addition to the naturalistic garden, as a shrubby groundcover, along seasonally moist streams, and for erosion control. Used by the native people for basketry.
Ribes aureum  golden currant
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Ribes aureum

(golden currant)

Tall, spreading, deciduous shrub 3 to 8 ft. tall and wide. Offers light green foliage with delicate clusters of bright yellow flowers in early spring. Adaptable to sun or shade, but best with light shade and moderate summer water. Tends to spread from suckers and can be controlled with pruning. Berries attract many birds including grosbeak and mockingbirds.
Ribes bracteosum  blue currant
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Ribes bracteosum

(blue currant)

Native from Mendocino County northwards, this deciduous shrub is distinctive for its long, upright inflorescences and large, shiny leaves up to eight inches wide. As many as fifty of the soft orange, saucer-shaped flowers can occur on a single stem in the spring followed by small blue fruits in late summer. In shaded, moist conditions the blue currant can reach a height and width of about six feet but can get larger in cool, wet areas along the coast. Combine with other plants of the redwood forest such as ferns, sorrel and wild ginger.
Ribes californicum  California gooseberry
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Ribes californicum

(California gooseberry)

Plant description coming soon.
Ribes divaricatum  spreading gooseberry
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Ribes divaricatum

(spreading gooseberry)

Native to coastal scrub, moist woods and shady canyons of the Pacific coast from British Columbia south through much of coastal California. This gooseberry is perhaps the most tasty of all of our native Ribes. The berries have the added benefit of being free of thorns. Forms an arching shrub 3-5 ft. tall and wide with thorns at the leaf nodes. The tiny flowers are composed of reddish sepals and white petals that dangle beneath the branches and are attractive to hummingbirds. The small, blue-black berries are relished by birds. Plant in light shade with some summer moisture. Will tolerate full sun near the coast. Useful as a barrier, hedgerow or habitat plant where it provides excellent food and thorny cover for birds.
Ribes indecorum  white flowered currant
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Ribes indecorum

(white flowered currant)

Native to Southern California chaparral and coastal scrub plant communities from Santa Barbara County to Northern Baja. This vase shaped deciduous shrub features thick, aromatic, scalloped leaves and grows 6 feet or so tall and wide. Small clusters of white flowers cover the stems in November and attract hummingbirds, bees and butterflies. The fruits that follow are very appealing to birds. Plant in sun to light shade. Little to no summer water is required once established. While this currant is often summer deciduous, a little extra water will help it to retain most of it's leaves all year long.


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