Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Manzanitas in bloom

The botanical highlight of our recent visit to my parents-in-law in Mount Shasta was seeing the manzanitas in bloom. In Mount Shasta manzanitas are everywhere. I don’t think many homeowners plant them; they’re just part of the natural landscape.

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With their evergreen leaves and their contorted trunks and branches, which vary from a rich reddish brown to a purplish black, manzanitas are attractive year round. In the spring, however, their beauty peaks when bell-shaped flowers ranging from white to pink erupt in dense clusters.

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There are more than 60 different manzanita species, grouped in the genus Arctostaphylos. The variety shown in this post is greenleaf manzanita (Arctostaphylos patula), the most common upright species in the mountains of Northern California.

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A number of gardenworthy cultivars are available in the nursery trade. Here and here are a few of them.

2 comments:

  1. Love them, every one. I'm officially up to four now in my front garden...I think it's time to stop.

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  2. I wonder if they will do well in our garden, hmmmm....just been looking at stockists of Arctostaphylos here...

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