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Ceanothus oliganthus (Hairy Ceanothus)

Explorer's Bush, Explorer's-bush, Hairy Ceanothus, Coast Ceanothus, Ceanothus divaricatus, Ceanothus hirsutus, Ceanothus oliganthus var. oliganthus, Ceanothus oliganthus var. orcuttii, Ceanothus orcuttii

Ceanothus oliganthus, Explorer's Bush, Explorer's-bush, Hairy Ceanothus, Ceanothus divaricatus, Ceanothus hirsutus, , California Lilac, Blue Flowers, Fragrant Shrubs, Evergreen Shrubs
Ceanothus oliganthus, Explorer's Bush, Explorer's-bush, Hairy Ceanothus, Ceanothus divaricatus, Ceanothus hirsutus, , California Lilac, Blue Flowers, Fragrant Shrubs, Evergreen Shrubs
Ceanothus oliganthus, Explorer's Bush, Explorer's-bush, Hairy Ceanothus, Ceanothus divaricatus, Ceanothus hirsutus, , California Lilac, Blue Flowers, Fragrant Shrubs, Evergreen Shrubs
Ceanothus oliganthus, Explorer's Bush, Explorer's-bush, Hairy Ceanothus, Ceanothus divaricatus, Ceanothus hirsutus, , California Lilac, Blue Flowers, Fragrant Shrubs, Evergreen Shrubs

Ceanothus oliganthus (Hairy Ceanothus) is an upright, intricately branched, evergreen shrub with a spreading crown. It is prized for its abundant rounded to cylindrical clusters packed with pale to purple-blue flowers in early spring to early summer. The flowers are so profuse that they literally cover the shrub, transforming the plant into an explosion of blue. The evergreen leaves are small, 1.5 in. long (4 cm), broadly oblong, with a leathery texture. They are dark green on top, paler and hairy on the underside, and are edged with hairy teeth. Attractive to bees and butterflies, the flowers give way to capsules. When they dehisce, the ovary pops off and the seeds are explosively ejected. Hairy Ceanothus is endemic to coastal California and typically found on ridges and upper slopes with shallow, well-drained soils. Suitable for revegetation or habitat restoration, Hairy Ceanothus is a valuable plant for use in hedgerows or for bank stabilization. It is an important plant for honey bees and honey production. This species is an important deer browse and provides protective cover for a number of species, including deer and a variety of chaparral rodents.

  • Grows up to 10 ft. tall (300 cm) and 12 ft. wide (360 cm).
  • Thrives in shallow, gravelly, sandy, well-drained soils in full sun. Highly drought tolerant. Established plants need little summer water (max once per month). Tolerates clay soil.
  • Excellent choice for beds and borders, hedges, coastal gardens, cottage gardens, Mediterranean gardens, or bank stabilization.
  • Propagate by seed (hot water treatment).
  • No serious pest or disease issues. Plants may suffer branch dieback during severe drought years.
  • Native to California.

Requirements

Hardiness 7 - 10
Climate Zones 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24
Plant Type Shrubs
Plant Family Rhamnaceae
Genus Ceanothus
Common names California Lilac
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Early, Mid, Late)
Summer (Early)
Height 8' - 10'
(240cm - 3m)
Spread 10' - 12'
(3m - 3.7m)
Spacing 360" (9.1m)
Maintenance Low
Water Needs Low
Soil Type Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Well-Drained
Characteristics Fragrant, Showy, Evergreen
Native Plants United States, California
Tolerance Drought, Clay Soil
Attracts Bees, Birds, Butterflies
Garden Uses Banks And Slopes, Beds And Borders, Hedges And Screens
Garden Styles Mediterranean Garden, Informal and Cottage, Coastal Garden
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Alternative Plants to Consider

Ceanothus integerrimus (Deerbrush)
Ceanothus thyrsiflorus var. griseus (Carmel Ceanothus)
Ceanothus thyrsiflorus (Blue Blossom)
Ceanothus cuneatus (Buckbrush)
Ceanothus ‘Julia Phelps’ (Small Leaf Mountain Lilac)
Ceanothus ‘Remote Blue’ (Mountain Lilac)

Recommended Companion Plants

Salvia leucophylla (Purple Sage)
Mimulus aurantiacus (Bush Monkey Flower)
Pinus ponderosa (Ponderosa Pine)
Quercus agrifolia (Coast Live Oak)

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Ceanothus (California Lilac)
While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.
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Requirements

Hardiness 7 - 10
Climate Zones 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24
Plant Type Shrubs
Plant Family Rhamnaceae
Genus Ceanothus
Common names California Lilac
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Early, Mid, Late)
Summer (Early)
Height 8' - 10'
(240cm - 3m)
Spread 10' - 12'
(3m - 3.7m)
Spacing 360" (9.1m)
Maintenance Low
Water Needs Low
Soil Type Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Well-Drained
Characteristics Fragrant, Showy, Evergreen
Native Plants United States, California
Tolerance Drought, Clay Soil
Attracts Bees, Birds, Butterflies
Garden Uses Banks And Slopes, Beds And Borders, Hedges And Screens
Garden Styles Mediterranean Garden, Informal and Cottage, Coastal Garden
How Many Plants
Do I Need?
Explore Great Plant Combination Ideas
Ceanothus (California Lilac)
Not sure which Ceanothus (California Lilac) to pick?
Compare Now

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