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12 07, 2022

Island Morning Glory

2022-08-07T15:04:28-07:00Categories: Blog, California Native, Nora Harlow, vines|Tags: , , |

There aren't many vines native to California, and few are truly evergreen. Fewer still are both evergreen and vigorous enough to cover a good-sized arbor or trellis. Calystegia macrostegia (coastal or island morning glory) is one that really fills the bill. It may drop leaves in summer if grown dry, but a little supplemental water or summer fog is enough to keep it green and growing near the coast. And vigorous? You may have to hold it back. Widely flaring flowers of Calystegia macrostegia tend to close by late afternoon or on cloudy days. The species is

4 02, 2016

California pipevine

2016-09-27T19:49:25-07:00Categories: Blog, groundcovers, vines|Tags: , , , , |

Aristolochia californica, California pipevine,  with chrysalis of pipevine swallowtail butterfly California pipevine (Aristolochia californica) is one of the first plants to flower in my northern California garden, sending forth dozens, no hundreds, of tiny blossoms on leafless stems in mid-winter, after the manzanitas but before flashier plants such as native irises grab center stage.  Their appearance, noticed only up close at first, signals the approaching end of winter and fuels my anticipation of full-on gardening weather. The flowers are, to say the least, unusual.  They grow more like fruits than flowers, maturing, right before your eyes, from a

3 11, 2015

California wild grape

2015-11-03T13:52:12-08:00Categories: Blog|Tags: , , |

Vitis californica 'Roger's Red' in fall color California grape (Vitis californica) is a large, fast-growing, deciduous vine that provides quick summertime privacy and shade as well as brilliant yellow, orange, or red fall color.  In summer or fall, the lush foliage is thrilling when backlit by afternoon sun. Native to riparian areas of California and Oregon, this headstrong vine grows thirty feet tall and wide with its preferred regimen of shaded roots, tops in full sun, and moderate summer water. Vines climb by tightly twining tendrils that stand firm against the most determined pulling and will advance high

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