Posts from the ‘California Native Plants’ Category

California Native Foods Lunch Event (December 8th at CNGF) @CalNativeGarden

Eating California

Lewisia – my current favorite CA Native plant


Mystery Dudleya

So I purchased this Dudleya from a local San Jose nursery.  The customer service rep told me that it was the Dudleya Britonii after looking the plant up in their purchase records.  I chuckled because it looks nothing like that!  In the last picture below, you can see my mystery plant photographed with a Dudleya Pulverulenta which is commonly confused with the Dudleya Britonnii, so you can tell how vastly different the plants are.

Update: After doing research online, I think this plant looks very similar to Dudleya Ingens.  I’m still going to continue to research to make sure though! 🙂

Mystery Dudleya width of over 30 cm /12 in

Impressive Long Cauex of about 18.5 cm /5 in

Mystery Dudleya Profile

Dudleya Pulverulenta and Dudleya Ingens


Dudleya Brittonii and Dudleya Ingens


The Hover Fly

Hoverfly 2

Hoverfly 1

Hoverfly 3

Hoverfly 4

Yarrow flowers attract itty bitty Carpet Beetles!

Carpet Beetles

Carpet Beetles on Yarrow Flower

Making love for 2…making love for 2 minutes! Soldier Beetles mating caught on camera!

Two Soldier Beetles mating

Soldier Beetles mating

My current California Native Plant collection

It’s a work in progress!  I love adding to my California Native plant selection.  If you love California, you must start your own native plant collection too!

Here are reasons why to go native (courtesy of California Native Plant Society)

Native vegetation evolved to live with the local climate, soil types, and animals. This long process brings us several gardening advantages.

  • Save Water:
    Once established, many native plants need minimal irrigation beyond normal rainfall.
  • Low Maintenance:
    Low maintenance landscaping methods are a natural fit with native plants that are already adapted to the local environment. Look forward to using less water, little to no fertilizer, little to no pesticides, less pruning, and less of your time.
  • Pesticide Freedom:
    Native plants have developed their own defenses against many pests and diseases. Since most pesticides kill indiscriminately, beneficial insects become secondary targets in the fight against pests. Reducing or eliminating pesticide use lets natural pest control take over and keeps garden toxins out of our creeks and watersheds.
  • Wildlife Viewing:
    Native plants, birds, butterflies, beneficial insects, and interesting critters are “made for each other.” Research shows that native wildlife prefers native plants.
  • Support Local Ecology:
    As development replaces natural habitats, planting gardens, parks, and roadsides with California natives can provide a “bridge” to nearby remaining wildlands.

Where can you buy natives?  I’ll tell you, I haven’t been lucky at Home Depot, OSH, or Lowe’s yet (although they have great plants for other purposes too).

Here are favorite two local nurseries for natives that I like to shop at:

Middlebrook Gardens

I’m a little biased, because these are the folks who really turned me on to Native California plants!  Alrie Middlebrook and her team are Experts at native plants!  They have been in business for a long time and know their plants!  They are extremely helpful and approachable.  Their nursery provides a great selection that represents several habitats and accompanying plants.  That is helpful when you’re trying to find plants for certain micro climates in your yard/patio.

Check out their website:

Summerwinds Nursery

I love Summerwinds because they have beautiful pottery and a huge selection of plants.  Their selection of natives hasn’t been replenished yet but I can’t wait to see more salvias at the store soon!  Dan, their native plant specialist was very helpful to me yesterday and is going to help me build my Dudleya collection as they become available.  They have shrubs that are native also, but as a container gardener, I don’t find shrubs to be practical or very attractive.

Check out their website:

Enjoy your natives and party on!

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