Plant Lists

Here at Nopalito Nursery we don't spend all our time hosting amazing workshops and blogging about our favorite California native plants: We also sell plants! To be specific, we sell:

  • Over 200 plants native to California
  • More than 400 kinds of succulent
  • At least 200 drought-tolerant exotics (non-Californians)
  • Lots and lots of EDIBLES in six-packs, quarts, and even gallon containers: Vegetables, culinary herbs, & even fruits — locally-grown and organic whenever possible!

See below for a partial list of our stock. We're continually adding plant descriptions and photos to our lists, so come back to this page soon and often!

Native plants we carry

Click on the name of a plant to read more. Sometimes you'll even find a photo or two or three, and you can click on those too!

Abutilon palmeri
Indian Mallow

Indian Mallow is, in our small opinion, one of the most underused California Native plants out there.  Quickly reaching a size of 3-6 feet high and wide, this desert rat does it all.  Spring and Summer (and sometimes longer) bring Apricot Orange flowers, while the plant shows off soft, heart shaped grey leaves all year.  Native to our local deserts and into the Southwest, this guy loves dry, hot-hot-hot spots, and a light pruning a few times a year will keep this plant looking good and flowering longer.  Indian Mallow does not handle cold weather well (less than 22 degrees), but it works well in most parts of Southern California, including Ojai, Calabasas and other hot-cold areas.  Try it as a soft hedge or behind smaller perennials where its beautiful grey leaves and rounded shape will rock the house like a local Nardcore band.  Highly Recommended!!

Achillea millefolium Selection
'Calistoga' Yarrow

One of the prettiest California Native perennials we carry, 'Calistoga' is easy to grow, produces tons of butterfly-attracting flowers, and has what many think are the most eye-catching leaves of any yarrow we stock.  Selected by our friends at Cal Flora Nursery in Sonoma County, this great plant handles Coastal (Oxnard, Ventura) and Inland (Ojai, Simi Valley) climates well, needs little water and looks great next to other low-water plants.  Beautiful gray leaves stay low and tight, spreading to 2 feet or more.  Flowers are 2 feet high and appear Spring – Summer or longer.  Makes a good cut flower and the leaves are used traditionally as food and medicinally.

Achillea millefolium Selection
'Sonoma Coast' Yarrow

Yarrow has been grown for hundreds of years by gardeners who adore their large flowers and beautiful foliage.  The plant has also been used for medicinal and culinary (FOOD, BABY!) purposes by many cultures, and with so many yarrows on the market it can be hard to pick just one.  'Sonoma Coast' is easily our favorite native yarrow, combining drought-tolerance, lush dark green fern-like foliage and short, bright white flowers all in one plant.  Evergreen, this rock star stays tight and compact, making it formal enough for even for the snobbiest gardens.  Takes full sun or light shade; remove old flowers for more blooms, and works great as a cut flower.  Butterflies love Yarrow!! Special THANKS to our friends at Cal Flora Nursery in Sonoma County for selecting and introducing this beauty.  Highly recommended!!

Arctostaphylos Hybrid
'John Dourley' Manzanita

John Dourley is quickly becoming a favorite of native plant lovers & low-water landscapers alike, and it's easy to see why.  This low-growing manzanita has more colors than a box of crayons, showing off bright pink flowers in Winter, chalky blue-green-copper leaves in Spring, and reddish Summer berries.  What this means is that the plant is interesting to look at ALL-YEAR, kinda like your bank account!  If that isn't enough, it's one of our faster growing manzanitas, and tolerates clay soil like a champ!  Needs very little water once established, and will grow 2-4 feet tall and 5-8 feet wide.  Use John Dourley like crazy around silvery native plants or on slopes where its mounding habit will look amazing. Remember-Hummingbirds Love Manzanitas!

Arctostaphylos densiflora x
'Howard McMinn' Manzanita

'Howard McMinn' Manzanita is like your favorite car - Beautiful, dependable and gets better with age (or is that a wine?).  Probably the most popular native Manzanita, this reliable plant works well in tons of different situations, even under Oak Trees!  Shows off the GORGEOUS twisitng trunk that Manzanita is loved for, and has a nice Winter flower show that hummingbirds and bees love.  'Howard McMinn' grows quickly for a Manzanita, eventually reaching 4-7 ft. tall and slightly wider, and can be kept small by pruning. Not all Manzanitas are easy to grow, this one is so easy and pretty it was named one of the U.C. Davis Arboretum All Stars (ask us about this great program!). 

Arctostaphylos edmundsii Selection
'Big Sur' Manzanita

'Big Sur' Manzanita is VERY RARE in nurseries, so you might want to put your hand on these plants before you finish reading this!  This heavily branched Manzanita is one of the best, if not the finest, small-sized Manzanita for small gardens looking to add that twisting and curving Manzanita look.  Growing to about 3 1/2 - 4 1/2 ft. high and slightly wider, this little beauty branches, twists and shreds with the best of them.  Even at a young age, the gorgeous red branches are visible, and the plant opens up more with age, making for a truly beautiful small Manzanita.  One of the most 'beach' tolerant of our Manzanitas, try it anywhere along the coast in Full Sun, or in light shade in hotter areas.  'Big Sur' tolerates clay soil, sandy soil, and needs little to no summer water to look its best!  Beautiful white-light pink flower show in Winter against dark green leaves, this is one of those rare natives that deserves to be grown much more.

Asclepias fascicularis
Narrow-leaf Milkweed

This is it!  The California Native Milkweed that our West Coast Monarch babies have been snacking on for hundreds, if not thousands, of years!  This Ventura County Native is a tough, sometimes aggressive plant, spreading underground to potentially form large colonies over time.  Grows 2-3 feet high, loves full sun or light shade.  Very drought tolerant along our coast, and does well with a little extra water to help it along.  Grows in sandy, rocky or heavy clay soils, looks very nice when growing and in flower, but will die back to the ground every Winter.  Works great in a large pot.  We strongly recommend planting this and other LOCAL, CALIFORNIA NATIVE milkweeds instead of the more colorful (and potentially harmful to our local butterflies) Mexican variety. Keep it real, Keep it local, Keep it Native!!

Berberis aquifolium v. repens
Creeping Barberry

A unique and beautiful plant, Creeping Barberry may eventually find its way into mainstream nurseries as an excellent low groundcover for dry, shady areas.  Until that day, come to us for the good stuff!  Growing somewhat slowly, it creeps underground and aboveground to about 1-3 ft. tall and wider, eventually forming what would be a great place to hang out in if you were a Smurf.  The very beautiful leaves are slightly spiky, though not enough to make Papa Smurf mad!  Bright yellow flowers in Spring turn to dusty blue berries in the Summer, which are edible (also has many medicinal uses).  In the Winter, even with our warm Winters, the leaves may change colors to rusty red or purple, making this a very interesting plant ALL YEAR!  A long-lived plant, it also rocks in Full Sun in cooler areas and adapts well to seasonal changes of sun and shade.  Low-water, prune it a few times a year when young for dense growth. 

California Wild Lilac Hybrid
'Frosty Blue' Ceanothus

Ceanothus, or California Lilacs, have a reputation for being big and beautiful, and this hybrid introduced by Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden only adds fuel to this fire!!  Frosty Blue is a fast, Fast, FAST evergreen shrub, quickly reaching 7-10 feet high and 8-12 feet wide and capable of a little more both ways, but DON'T BE SCURED!  With a little pruning, this excellent California Native can be formed into a completely drought tolerant purple-blue flowered tree, or leave it alone to form a dense hedge.  This plant puts on an AMAZING flower display in the Spring…seriously, people will want to know what that plant is in your garden with the flowers you spray painted blue!  Ok, maybe not, but because of its dense growth habit, long flower show, tolerance of clayey or sandy soils and its very fast, evergreen nature, we recommend Frosty Blue as ONE OF THE BEST native hedge or screen plants available!

Ceanothus Hybrid
'Concha' Ceanothus

How does it feel to be one of the best CA. Native plants for the garden?  Just ask 'Concha' Ceanothus!  This beautiful Wild Lilac has been grown for decades, and over time has proven over and over that it works well everywhere!  Ojai, Oxnard and all 12 people in Piru can use 'Concha' for a beautiful flowering shrub in Full Sun (Just teasing, We love you Piru!....Town Council, call us about landscaping with natives!)  Considered by many to be the most stunning of our Ceanothus in full flower, this is one plant that stops you in your tracks when in full bloom with purple-blue flowers, usually March-April. 'Concha' grows quickly to 5-8 ft. tall and wide, and works in clay soils with LITTLE TO NO SUMMER WATER! Arching, natural habit, FAST growth and nice evergreen leaves make this an easy and beautiful native screen.  One of the 100 plants named to the UC Davis ALL STAR list. (Ask us about this great program!) 

Ceanothus Hybrid
'Joyce Coulter' Ceanothus

Look out in the garden......It's a Groundcover, It's a Shrub, No Wait!.......It's Super Ceanothus! Actually, it's just 'Joyce Coulter' Ceanothus, but this plant is a SUPER plant!  One of the oldest, most common and easy to grow Ceanothus around, 'Joyce Coulter' is an excellent choice for beginner gardeners wanting those beautiful blue Ceanothus flowers.  Tolerates Full Sun or Fairly Shady conditions (under Oaks), and puts on a beautiful fragrant flower show in the Spring.  The rest of the year, this baby is evergreen and shiny, growing to 2-4 feet high, and 8-12 feet wide ++.  Joyce Coulter needs little to no water along the coast, a little more in HOT areas, and get this - it doesn't mind regular water! So easy, so fast, so shiny and pretty! Also takes a good cutting and shearing, which you need to do if the plant ever wants to grow up instead of out.  One of our best mounding groundcovers....or low shrubs?! You decide!

Ceanothus hearstiorum
Hearst Ceanothus

A rare native plant in the wild, Hearst Ceanothus is one of the lowest & fullest native groundcovers available.  But don't get too excited yet - this plant can be more demanding of perfect conditions than your ex-husband!!  Growing 6-12 inches tall & spreading 6-8 feet wide, Hearst Ceanothus looks like a natural replacement for all those water-loving groundcovers.  To do well, however, it seems to need to be planted near the Coast, in well-drained soil, and receive little to no Summer water.  The star-pattern of its young growth & bluish-purple Spring flowers are just bonuses on this great little groundcover, which has worked well in hotter areas with afternoon shade and just enough Summer water to keep it happy. May be short-lived (5-15 years), but this rare beauty is well worth it.  Highly recommended for local gardens!

Ceanothus impressus Selection
'Vandenberg' Ceanothus

This super-rare California Native is great for local gardens looking to use the beautiful blue-purple flowered Ceanothus but without the 10-15 feet space many of them usually take up.  'Vandenberg', collected by M. Nevin Smith at, you guessed it, Vandenberg Air Force Base, is a fast-growing dense shrub, eventually reaching 3-5 feet high and slightly wider.  Perfect for our local coastal climates, it loves good drainage and almost looks like a mini-version of some of the more famous (and much bigger) Ceanothus on the market, like 'Dark Star' or 'Julia Phelps'.  Use a few to create a small purple-flowered hedge, or use it with Island Bush Poppy for a great Yellow-Purple show. Tiny dark green leaves keep this plant evergreen and attractive all year. This underused plant is fast becoming one of our favorite small native shrubs.  Ask us to point it out to you in our demonstartion gardens. Choice!!

Ceanothus thyrsiflorus Selection
'Snow Flurry' Ceanothus

 In the world of native Ceanothus, there's  big, there's bigger, then there's 'Snow Flurry'.  Our biggest white-flowered California Lilac, 'Snow Flurry' quickly grows to 10-12 feet high and wide, and is capable of much more!!  Take out your pruners and prune it up to form a low-water, white flowered tree, or let it go wild and take up lots of space on a hillside or use it as an extremely fast screen.  Growing 3-5 feet or more a year when young, 'Snow Flurry' produces tons of bright white flowers in Spring; the rest of the year it holds its own with beautiful, shiny green leaves.  Ceanothus can be tricky for 'average' gardeners because they usually like dry Summers and well-drained soils, but 'Snow Flurry' has made a name for itself by tolerating all kinds of soils and watering schedules! Amazing in our coastal climates.....Big, Fast and Beautiful!!


Ceanothus thyr. v. griseus Selection
'Yankee Point' Ceanothus

Truly the King (or Queen?) of our native Ceanothus, 'Yankee Point' is easily the most widely planted Ceanothus in the state.  Used by thousands of homeowners, landscapers and government agencies alike, this plant is SO EASY TO GROW!  Quickly reaching 3 ft. high and spreading to 10-15 ft. wide, this is an excellent choice for a low, but wide hedge or a fast evergreen groundcover on a slope.  Blooms heavily in Spring with fragrant dark blue flowers, 'Yankee Point' is known to flower lightly off and on throughout the year!  Tolerates clay soil, heavy wind, constant pruning and part shade.  Dark green leaves look good all year.  CAUTION! This plant is so popular many mainstream nurseries are carrying this plant from unreliable sources, and many times those plants are either much taller or not as easy to grow as the true 'Yankee Point'.  We carry the real-deal! Ask to see a photo of this beauty in full bloom!

Coreopsis gigantea
Giant Coreopsis

This Ventura County native gets our vote for most unique California Native plant! 50% shrub, 60% succulent and 34% 'What the heck is that thing?' (Yes, we flunked math), this is THE yellow-flowered plant that lights-up our local hills from Jan. into Spring, including most of the drive from Oxnard to Malibu on the PCH.  Looking like a cross between a mini-palm tree and an elephants' trunk, Giant Coreopsis quickly grows to 3-6 feet tall, and in the ground will drop all of its leaves and look dead by the Summer. At the first sign of Fall rain, this is one of the first plants to green-up, and some flower as early as November.  A great local plant for gardens that are as dry as our humor in the Summer (seriously, they need to be bone dry during the Summer months or they will rot out).  Works well under oak trees, where it will flower less but can light up the shady winter garden, or try it in a pot next to the beach. 

Cupressus forbesii
Tecate Cypress

California is full of rare, beautiful plants that deserve to be in more landscapes, and guess what? Tecate Cypress is one of the best!  Very rare in the wild and even harder to find in nurseries, this beautiful native Cypress does so much with so little (water).  Fast growing with attractive evergreen leaves, it can quickly reach 10-15 feet and eventually 20-30 feet high.  But don't worry, this is one native that doesn't mind some pruning, and it is easy to keep this plant pruned into a very formal hedge. (Ask us to see pictures of this beauty, full grown!).  We consider this the 'Manzanita' of our native Cypress; As this plant gets older, it begins to show off its' peeling bark, which can be a ridiculous mix of deep red-pink-silver-green, making this a plant that keeps on giving.  Very, very drought tolerant, and easily handles clay soils, desert heat, heavy winds and city smog.  Highly Recommended as a unique windbreak, screen or focal point!

Dendromecon harfordii
Island Bush Poppy

Island Bush Poppy is kinda like the Kim Kardashian of our native shrubs - Kim is considered the prettiest of her sisters, and many consider Island Bush Poppy the PRETTIEST of our native shrubs (Wow, did that get your attention?).  Blooming almost 12 months out of the year with bright yellow flowers and beautiful silver-green leaves, Island Bush Poppy is a truly stunning site in Spring.  Tolerating Sun-Part Shade and reaching 5-12 feet high & wide, Island Bush Poppy does have a few issues that make it a little touchy and delicate in the garden. To succeed, make sure it receives just enough water to keep it happy, especially when establishing it the first year.  As a  poppy, it has a brittle root system that needs very gentle handling.  Don't miss our Bush Poppy in front of the nursery, blooming over 13 months out of the year (oh wait, there's only 12!)

Encelia californica
California Sunflower

If you have ever seen bright-yellow flowers in our local hills, chances are it was California Sunflower.  If you saw that same plant in the heat of our dry Summers, you would probably wonder why anyone would want that plant in their garden?! Good question.  The answer is that California Sunflower, like many of our best natives, does look dry and wild in our hills in the Summer (Wouldn't you if you had no water for 5 months?),but bringing this local into your garden and deeply watering it once or twice a month works miracles. In lightly watered garden, it keeps its' leaves, looks lush throughout the Summer and is one of our longest-blooming plants in the garden - a little pruining of dead flowers can make this baby flower from Apr.-Oct., or longer!  An excellent plant for feeding local insects, it reaches 3-4 feet high and slightly wider. 

Epilobium californica Selection
'Catalina' California Fuchsia

One of our biggest and brightest natives for Summer and Fall color! Beautiful upright stems covered by gray-green leaves look good in Spring and Summer; Come July, the plant begins a fireworks display that makes Disneyland jealous, covering itself with orange-red flowers that last well into October.  'Catalina' can reach 2-4 feet high and spreads underground, making it AN EXCELLENT CHOICE FOR HILL OR SOIL STABILIZATION.  One of the best native plants for attracting hummingbirds to your garden in the Summer and Fall.  Thrives on little water and minimal maintenance, and does extremely well in full, hot sun in most parts of Southern California.  Thanks to Mike Evans & Tree of Life Nursery for introducing this Channel Islands native. 

Erigeron glaucus Hybrid
'W.R. Seaside Daisy'

Ok, let's cut the B.S.; There are 2 types of people buying native plants, those buying them because they want to and those that are being 'FORCED TO' because of water restrictions and rising water rates.  This plant is for those being 'FORCED TO' (ok, it's for everyone, but didn't that intro sound intense?!) We nominate 'W.R.' Seaside Daisy as one of the prettiest and easiest California Native plants around! Stays less than 18 inches high and 2 feet wide, producing pink-purple flowers for months, and even more if you do a little pruning.  Attracts butterflies, tolerates clay or sand, takes once a week water or much less….This Baby Performs!  Very low-water near the coast, give it water every few weeks in Ojai, Agoura or Simi and it will be fine!  Beautiful, reliable and works everywhere, which is why it's on the UC Davis Arboretum All Stars list (Ask us about this amazing program). Choice!

Eriogonum arborescens
Santa Cruz Island Buckwheat

Folks love plants from our local Channel Islands, and Santa Cruz Island Buckwheat (S.C.I.) is one of the prettiest ones we carry.  Growing quickly to 3-6 ft. tall & wide and tolerating clay soils, this beautiful native looks great and fits well in almost any low-water garden. When young, it looks like a needle-leafed ball, but as S.C.I. grows older, it shows off its beautiful curving/ shredding trunk, bringing you years of beauty (like a mini-Manzanita).  Flowers heavily from Summer-Fall, sometimes well over 6 months! Butterflies love the soft-colored white-pink flowers.  A plant that won't overwhelm you with loud colors, but instead enchant you with it's simple beauty year-round.  Full Sun, very little water. Check out this beauty in our garden!

Eriogonum cinereum
Ashyleaf Buckwheat

Found in the wild from Santa Barbara to L.A., this beautiful plantita is easily on our "Top 10 List of Most Underused Native Plants."  Lighting up the hills of Malibu, Thousand Oaks, Carpenteria and so many other places from July-Oct. with pink pom-pom flowers, Ashyleaf Buckwheat is one of those plants we get asked about every Summer and Fall, but it is SO HARD TO FIND in nurseries.  So buy it while it's available!  Use this fast-growing, low water shrub on slopes or hillsides and watch it go nuts.  Loves Full Sun, even in hotter inland areas, and quickly reaches 2-4 feet tall and twice as wide.  Beautiful gray leaves, hundreds of pinkish flowers that attract butterflies and bees for months.  You want an easy, medium sized native slope with 12 months of flowers?  Try this with Ceanothus 'Yankee Point', Ceanothus 'Valley Violet', Purple Sage and Cleveland Sage, and Santa Cruz Island Buckwheat.....So easy!

Eriogonum fasc. Selection
'Dana Point' California Buckwheat

'Dana Point' is a great selection of our California Buckwheat, showing off lush grass-green leaves and bright white flowers all Summer!  This butterfly and bird-friendly native is as low-water as they get, and makes an ideal mounding replacement for Rosemary here along the coast. Loving Full Sun - Light Shade, 'Dana Point' grows very fast to a dense 2-3 foot high and 4-6 foot wide plant.  Doesn't mind clay soils as long as they are kept DRY during the Summer, this is one plant you can literally plant and forget about!  Nice in a large container, on slopes or even in a butterfly friendly parking strip! Like our 'Compitas' at Tree of Life Nursery say, 'Every Southern California garden should include California Buckwheat'!   

Eriogonum fasciculatum
California Buckwheat

For those gardeners looking for 13 months of neon-orange and pink flowers on tropical-looking plants, please move along!!  For those gardeners who love our local hills and wildlife and want to see them represented in their gardens, welcome home baby!  California Buckwheat is the most common of our California Buckwheats, found all over the state from Deserts, Beaches, Mountains and occasionally at Lakers games.  The white-pink flowers, showing up Summer-Fall, are show-stopping and attract butterflies and bees like crazy.  A great plant for erosion control and hillsides, this local beauty needs little-no Summer water and is at home in Oxnard, Ojai, Simi Valley and tons of other local spots.  Reaches about 2 1/2 - 5 feet tall and wide and looks best with a good heavy pruning once a year.  Plant Local, Enjoy Life!!

Eriogonum giganteum
St. Catherine's Lace

The giant of our Native Buckwheats, St. Catherine's Lace is a big, beautiful shrub that is one of the few California Native plants found on the U.C. Davis Arboretum All Star List (ask us about this Amazing program!).  The silvery-gray leaves make this a beautiful plant all year, while large (or Gi-normous) flower clusters typical of Buckwheats show up for months, starting white and aging to a rusty-red. The contrast of dried flowers on gray leaves is very striking, and the fresh OR dried flowers are beautiful in cut-flower arrangements. Fast growing, expect St. Catherines Lace to reach 4-6 feet high and wide in a year or 2. Tolerates HOT-HOT conditions, but also works well next to the coast.  Low water (if any) during the Summer, and survives in clay soil if it drains decently.  Originally found only on our Channel Islands, this unique and formal plant works well on slopes, as a focal point or as a medium-sized screen.

Eriogonum grande v. rubescens
Red-Flowered Buckwheat

If you have ever seen a Native Buckwheat in a garden, chances are it was the beautiful Red-Flowered Buckwheat.  Easy to grow and small enough for any garden, this little red monster lights up the landscape with an AMAZING display of light pink-rosy red flower clusters from late Spring-Summer, and sometimes longer!  Reaches about 1-2 feet high and slightly wider, with interesting evergreen leaves and strong drought-tolerance.  This local native (Channel Islands Baby!) is very rare in the wild, but is so easy to grow and beautiful that it is usually one of the only California Native plants found in 'regular' nurseries.  Tolerates sandy or clayey soil, hot sun or part shade and attracts and feeds butterflies like crazy - A great native plant for beginners gardens; Use it in bunches for months of low-water color! See it in our demo. gardens or ask to see a photo of it in full bloom!

Eriogonum latifolium
Coast Buckwheat

California is full of Buckwheats, and this little seaside plant is one of the coolest.  Looking a lot like the famous 'Red Buckwheat' (E. grande v. rubescens), only with white-light pink flowers, this plant is an awesome choice for local coastal gardens.  Use it in Full Sun or Part Shade with little to no Summer water in places like Oxnard, Malibu and Coastal Santa Barbara.  Reportedly works in hotter places with afternoon shade and a little Summer water.  Once the Late Spring flowers dry up, prune them off to get months and months of blooms our local butterflies love!  Coast Buckwheat usually reaches about 1 1/2 - 2 feet tall when flowering and just as wide, forming a small, rounded mound.  Easy to grow, evergreen, low water, low maintenance AND our local wildlife love it......What more can you ask for?(Don't Say a Discount, Smart One!)

Eriogonum parvifolium
Cliff Buckwheat

Cliff Buckwheat is one of those plants you'll NEVER find in mainstream nurseries, but here at Nopalito it gets top billing! (Yeah, we crazy!) This is the original and best food source for the endangered 'El Segundo Blue Butterfly', so anyone living around the L.A. Airport, get this plant in your yard! Besides being a butterfly magnet, this easy to grow native is actually a beautiful and garden worthy plant.  Growing quickly to about 2-3 feet high and 3-5 feet wide,Cliff Buckwheat thrives on Full Sun and little to no water near the coast. In hotter areas, give a little Summer water and light shade. Beautiful white-light pink pompom flowers from Summer-Fall, eventually drying to a Copper Brown that give the plant a beautiful 'Chaparral' look in the Fall.  Cut hard every Winter for best looks.  An excellent plant for feeding local insects, also superb on slopes and cliffs. Tolerates clay soils.  Ask to see this plant in our demo. garden.

Eriophyllum staechadifolium 'Compacta'
Compact Lizard's Tail

An AWESOME new compact version of our native lizard tail!  Beautiful, lacy gray-green leaves, a tight mounding habit and bright yellow flowers Spring, Summer and Fall should make this an excellent choice for local coastal gardens.  Reaches 12-24 inches high and 3-4 feet wide. Well drained soil is recommended, but our original plant has done beautifully in fairly heavy clay soil with a deep watering once a month during the dry season.  Heavy flower production from June – October; Remove dead flowers once or twice a season to encourage more blooms.  Found along the coast of California in coastal sand dunes and great for attracting local butterflies. Check out this beautiful plant in our demonstration garden.  (We would love to hear about your experiences with this beautiful new plant!!)  

Galvezia speciosa Selection
'Boca Rosa' Island Snap Dragon

Island Snap Dragon is one of California's best plants for attracting hummingbirds, and with a reputation for VERY HEAVY FLOWERING, the selection 'Boca Rosa' will make your house a 24-hour truck stop for hummingbirds!  Bright red 'snapdragon' flowers show up HEAVY from March-June, with some flowers appearing almost all year.  All of this on a plant that is hands-down one of the easiest and most rewarding California Native plants for the garden!  Works beautifully in a large pot, or use it on small slopes. 'Boca Rosa' will quickly reach 3-4 feet high and slightly wider.  Cut back hard every year or 2 to keep lush and clean.  Takes part shade like a champ, and loves hot Coastal Sun.  Highly recommended for the beginning native plant gardener!

(Hespero) Yucca whipplei
Our Lord's Candle

One of Californias' prettiest succulents, and wouldn't you know it, it's a Ventura County Native! Our Lord's Candle is a beautiful grass-like plant, showing off silvery blue green blades all year and 100% drought-tolerance…..but WATCH OUT!!  The tips are extremely sharp, so plant it out of the way or somewhere your least favorite nephew will get to.  A huge food plant in native diets, Our Lord's Candle flowers just once in its lifetime and then dies, usually producing little babies to take its place.  The flowers can take 3-15 years to show up, so if you are an L.A. Clippers fan then you know to be patient and wait for next year.  Excellent in full, hot sun and extremely dry areas.  Use as an accent on hillsides, in far away pots, or in a full moon garden with White Sage.  Flowers and flowering stalks are edible.  Can handle very cold and hot situations.

Heteromeles arbutifolia

Toyon is used for food, used as medicine, good for screens from your neighbors, and good for our pocketbooks when you buy it from us!  A beautiful Ventura County native that is, of course, low-water and easy to grow, this is THE plant that brightens up our hills with red berries around Christmas time, and those same berries will attract birds to your yard for a wildlife party!  Growing 8 - 20 feet tall and wide, Toyon is easy to prune to manage its size, and loves to be in Full Sun or Part Shade.  Occasionally in the wild, you will see Toyon growing in almost Full shade, and it does very well under the shade of Oak Trees.  Puts on a nice Summer flower show (white), with shiny green leaves all year and can even be pruned into a multi-trunk tree.  This is one of the most reliable large screens or hedges California has to offer, which is why it is on the UC Davis Arboretum All Star List (ask us about this great program!) 

Juncus patens Selection
'Carman's Gray' Wire Grass

Turn your 'Black Thumb' into a 'Gray Thumb' with this SUPER easy to grow California native!  Wire Grass has a neat, upright habit and tolerates Wet OR Dry conditions……Seriously, try to drown it in seasonal streams or torture it with little Summer water…This plant shines on! Clay soils – No Problem!.......Full Sun – Bring It On!.......Heavy Shade – It's All Good! Wire grass reaches 2 feet high and spreads to form dense, stiff clumps.  Keeping summer water low will keep clumps tight and small, extra water will encorage this baby to spread.  Nice in pots or cut flower arrangements. Excellent choice for beginners looking to add a unique element to their gardens.

Juncus patens Selection
'Elk Blue' Wire Grass

An excellent selection of our native Wire Grass, 'Elk Blue' shines in the garden with the most clean blue color you will find on our native rushes without spray-painting them!  Reaching about 18-24 inches high, 'Elk Blue' can spread with the best of them, so give it room, or keep it on the dry side and keep it as a nice tight clump.  Wire Grass is loved for its' strong, upright form, and 'Elk Blue' looks amazing in a pot combined with gray succulents or perennials.  An excellent first grass (rush) for native plant rookies, 'Elk Blue' can tolerate a ton of water, or keep it almost completely dry and it will still be o.k.! We have had a few plants in Oxnard in Full Sun, that have not received any water besides rain for over 2 years and they are beautiful!  Also works well in the shade of Oak Trees. Special Thanks to Randy Baldwin and San Marcos Growers in Santa Barbara for introducing this choice Mendocino County native.

Lessingia filaginifolia Selection
'Silver Carpet' Aster

Silver Carpet Aster is one of the best low-water groundcovers around…….So why haven't you heard of it or seen it?  Well, this great California Native, while quickly growing 5-10 feet wide and staying less than a foot tall, tends to look HORRIBLE in containers.  No Joke! Look at it right now, it probably looks weak, overgrown, etc.  But HAVE NO FEAR!  This beautiful plant grows and fills out quickly, covering itself with purple-pink flowers from Summer into Fall.  This makes it one of our best low-water, native groundcovers for summer color.  The flowers attract tons of local butterflies, and the silvery leaves look good all year.  This plant was beautiful enough to be named one of the UC Davis Arboretum All Stars, and it looks especially good spilling over a low wall.  Special Thanks to local horticulturist Carol Bornstein for selecting and introducing this great plant. 

Lupinus albifrons
Silver Bush Lupine

Violet-Purple Lupines are one of the most beautiful and familiar of our California wildflowers, lighting up roadsides and freeway drives in the Spring.  But few people know about Silver Bush Lupine, a California native shrub that reaches about 3-5 feet high and wide and looks AMAZING in the spring when in full-flower.  The rest of the year, this hard-to-find Lupine is beautiful in a subtle way, with those silvery leaves that mix together well with so many other native plants and a 'woody' look that gets better with age.  In fact, old specimens of this plant look more like 5 foot tall Lupine trees than shrubs and are truly beautiful.  Most native Lupines need little or no water, good drainage and full sun.  If you can provide these, Silver Bush Lupine is fast, beautiful and easy! The sometimes fragrant purple-violet flowers are excellent for attracting local butterflies. Ask to see a picutre of this stunning plant in flower.

Ornithostaphylos oppositifolia
Palo Blanco (White Stick or White Branch)

Many Californians' love and adore Manzanitas for their smooth red bark, but most have never heard of this beautiful Manzanita relative.  Well, like Angelina Jolies' beautiful younger sister (yes, we just made her up for this write-up) Palo Blanco is just as beautiful OR MORE beautiful than the famous Manzanita! 

Growing slowly, sometimes quickly, to 8-15 feet high and wide, Palo Blanco makes an excellent centerpiece shrub, with its' most beautiful feature being its attractive bark.  Part cinnamon brown, part chalky white, the curving bark on older plants makes this plant look like a brownish gray-white manzanita. Older specimens are BEAUTIFUL and VERY RARE in gardens.  Tolerating ridiculous amounts of heat and drought, Palo Blanco is found in San Diego County and parts of Northern Baja California but is quickly losing much of its habitat due to human development, which is a shame because the winter flowers, similar to manzanita flowers, provide food for hummingbirds and other insects.  Produces Manzanita-like fruits in the Summer, which may have been used by native peoples for food.  Highly recommended for gardeners looking for a rare and unique plant, Palo Blanco is gorgeous in pots, as a hedge or as a centerpiece in smaller gardens.  Ask us to show you a picture of this beautiful plant ,full-grown, that will blow your native socks off!

Penstemon heterophyllus Hybrid
Penstemon 'Margarita BOP'

Say Hello to our Little Friend!  This Native Penstemon is our best-selling plant, and it's a great plant for beginners and experts alike.  This plant is small, beautiful and works in so many different conditions...... Clay Soil...Hot Agoura Hills....Cool Oxnard....Once a month or once a week water.....Full Sun or Light Shade.  Margarita BOP is loved by so many gardeners for its' serious Flower Power, turning shades of pink-purple-blue starting in Spring and lasting into Summer (or Fall) if dead-headed and given a little water.  Perfect size for any garden, 18 inches high and 2-3 feet wide. A proud member of the UC Davis Arboretum All Star List (ask us about this Great program!).  Special Thanks to Las Pilitas Nursery for introducing this great plant.


Rhamnus californica Selection
'Eve Case' Coffeeberry

For all of you baseball fans, 'Eve Case' Coffeeberry is like the San Francisco Giants of the native plant world....Nothing too flashy, just hard-working, dependable and yes put down $100 if they are playing at home and Cain is starting!  For all of you non-baseball fans, it's a nice plant!  Growing 4-8 feet tall and wide, 'Eve Case' never blows you away with neon flowers or crazy leaf color, but it makes you mighty happy that you planted it!  Nice evergreen leaves on a dense plant, 'Eve Case' works as a small hedge or a foundation plant against walls or under windows.  The berries start green, then red, then black and the entire plant is like a Disneyland for wildlife to hang out in.  Low water, tolerates Full Sun or pretty heavy shade, especially in hotter areas.  Nice under oak trees and a great plant for those of us near the coast. Nice between a lawn and a hard place, or keep it dry.  Prune occassioanlly to keep dense and compact.

Rhamnus californica Selection
'Leatherleaf' Coffeeberry

'Leatherleaf' is a perfect name for this Coffeeberry selection, because the leaves look like......Leather!  Actually, many folks think they look a lot like Rhododendron leaves, and we have to agree. The lush, dark leaves are very striking on 'Leatherleaf', and this plant is so tidy and formal looking that it is quickly becoming one of the most popular Coffeeberry selections in California! So why not jump on the 'Leatherleaf' bandwagon, since the L.A. Clippers bandwagon is already full!  Dense and evergreen, 'Leatherleaf' grows fairly quickly to 5-8 feet tall and wide and works well in full sun or the shade of Oaks, or try it in a spot that can be either at anytime of the year.  Very nice as a foundation shrub against a house.  Small flowers that insects love, followed by green-red-black berries that our local wildlife adore! Very low water, and works in rocky or clayey soils. Special Thanks to Roger Raiche for this excellent selection.

Rhus integrifolia
Lemonade Berry

One of our best selling and most reliable native plants, Lemonade Berry is amazing, beautiful and should be in more local gardens.  Found in our own Ventura County hills and down into Baja California, this EXTREMELY drought-tolerant native is a tough, evergreen beauty.  Quickly growing 4-8 feet tall (sometimes up to 15!), it works well as a wild screen or get your favorite chain saw out and cut it into a 5x5 box to hide the neighbors!  Small spring flowers develop into Summer fruits that local birds love and are used to make a tart 'lemonade' drink.  This is one of those plants that looks amazing all year in our hills with no Summer water, and it will add wildlife and evergreen beauty to your garden.  Great choice for local Coastal gardens, and handles clay soils well.  Very versatile, Lemonade Berry takes full sun on the coast or use it under oak trees in hotter places. (Or use its' Big-Brother Sugar Bush in full sun) 

Rhus ovata
Sugar Bush

It's not often we find plants that grow naturally in Ventura County AND the true deserts of Arizona, but here is one of our best!  Sugar Bush, a close relative of Lemonade Berry, is one of the best plants for our hotter areas in Southern California.  Completely drought-tolerant once established - if God ever decides to stop the rains completely for 5 years, Sugar Bush would probably still be around! This lush-looking evergreen plant can reach varying sizes, depending on light, soil and water.  Count on at least 6 feet high and wide, but usually 8-20 feet high and wide.  Don't worry, Sugar Bush also responds well to pruning to keep it manageable, and the Winter white-pink flower show is VERY nice. Summer brings sticky sour fruits that are used by many native folks in a refreshing drink.  Tolerates clay soil as long as it is kept Summer dry. 

Ribes speciosum
Fuchsia-Flowered Gooseberry

One of our spiniest native plants, this Ventura County gooseberry looks AMAZING when in full flower, usually Winter - Early Spring.  The crimson-blood red flowers are ridiculously beautiful, and they are a favorite for hummingbirds in Winter.  Extremely low water once established, this plant will drop most or all of its leaves during the Summer and waits until the Fall rains to produce lush, dark green leaves.  Fuchsia-flowered Gooseberry is very good at keeping small kids away, but if you love your family, try it in shady woodland gardens or in a shady pot.  Sprawls to 3-6 feet high and possibly wider, prune yearly to keep neat. 

Ribes viburnifolium
Catalina Perfume

Found only in Southern California, Northern Baja and our own Channel Islands, this unique Currant is a creeping, sprawling, spicy-smelling plant that loves part-shade!  Don't buy Catalina Perfume for the flower show - It's small, inconsistent and produces few fruits.  Instead, use our only evergreen Currant for its' beautiful red stems, deep green leaves and attractive arching form.  It works great in shady pots, under Oak Trees or any shady spot where its arching stems can be admired.  Very low water once established, Catalina Perfume looks great behind small Coral Bells (Heucheras) and Native Irises.  Reaches 2-4 feet high and eventually spreads wider. Prune a few times a year to keep this great plant compact and full.  A proud member of the UC Davis Arboretum All Stars List (ask us about this great program!) 

Romneya coulteri
Matilija Poppy

Matilija Poppy has the biggest flower of any California Native plant, and with a sweet, fruity fragrance when in bloom it's easy to see why this Ventura County local is one of our most popular plants……But hold on, Cowgirl!!  This plant is NOT for everyone, as it can take its sweet time to get going, but once it does, watch out! Matilija Poppy spreads underground and can form huge colonies, making it a bad choice for smaller gardens, unless you are willing to fight it like a new sales tax.  Instead, use its amazing drought-tolerance (bone dry is perfect) and spreading habit to your advantage; Try it on a hill for erosion control or in big, dry gardens as a backdrop to other low water plants. Best planted between November and April, especially in hotter areas.  Roots of this plant are very fragile, handle gently when planting. Bees love the flowers!!  

Salvia apiana
White Sage

Our best selling California Native sage, and one of the easiest to grow!  The gray-silver leaves are loved by countless gardeners and dried and burned in many traditional ceremonies.  Add to that tall flower spikes in May – July that attract bees and butterflies and you have a great plant for looks and wildlife.  White Sage loves full sun and dry Dry DRY conditions, once a month Summer watering is usually more than enough in almost all parts of Southern California.  Cut back once or twice a year to keep compact and clean.  White Sage looks amazing in 'full moon' gardens, and works well when used to stabalize soils.  A great Ventura County native plant, this is one of the few natives named to the UC Davis Arboretum All Star List (ask us about this great program!)

Salvia clevelandii
Cleveland Sage

Considered by many to be the finest wild sage California has to offer, take a step back and judge for yourself!  On a hot, dry day you smell Cleveland Sage way before you see it, and rubbing the leaves will bring an even stronger sweet Chaparral smell.  Beginning in late Spring, this Southern California native completely covers itself with purple-pink-blue flowers that drive butterflies, bees and hummingbirds wild!  This is a fast, medium size plant for DRY areas.....When we say dry, think Mojave Desert, then think drier than that!  Does well with one or 2 deep waterings from May-October!  In hotter areas or to keep it somewhat lush, deep water once a month.  Quickly reaches 3-6 feet tall and wide, and the flower show gets louder and prettier with age.  Cleveland Sage can work in clay soil as long as it drains quickly and is dry during the summer.

Salvia clevelandii Hybrid
Allen Chickering Sage

Allen Chickering Sage is a BEAST!.....if beasts were to grow into 5 foot balls of delight, that is!  A hybrid between 2 excellent native sages (Cleveland and Purple), this very, very fast plant can reach full size in just a year or 2, each year blooming brighter and louder!  4-5 feet high and wide (or a little wider) is normal for this plant, which loves the hottest sun you can find.  Needs little to no water (don't put next to a lawn!), and flowers from late spring into Summer with beautiful Violet-Purple wands of magic that butterflies, hummingbirds and bees love!  This plant can be in and out of bloom until the Fall, and should be cut back once or twice a year for best appearances.  Oh wait, we're forgetting the best part.......Rub the leaves and smell! Hands down one of the best-smelling and prettiest native plants we grow!  Works beautifully on slopes.

Salvia clevelandii Selection
'Winnifred Gilman' Sage

One of our favorite native plants, this great Sage is loved for so many reasons.  Brush against its leaves to reveal a sweet aroma, which many people think is the Sweetest of all California Sages.  A very compact (3 1/2 ft. high x 4 ft. wide) and fast Sage with nice reddish stems, tight growth and beautiful purple-blue flowers from May-July ++.  Loves Hot Sun and good drainage; Has worked well for us in Dry Clay soil.  Needs 3 or 4 deep waterings from June-October to look its best - that's it! Low maintenance, showy and great in a wildlife garden......No wonder it's one of the few natives on the U.C, Davis Arbortetum All Star List (Ask us about this great program!).  Thanks to our friends at Cal Flora Nursery for 're-introducing' this outstanding native.

Salvia leucophylla 'Figueroa'
'Figueroa' Purple Sage

Purple Sage was already one of the best native plants for the garden, then Wintergreen Nursery had to introduce this AMAZING plant and set the bar even higher!  'Figueroa' is one of those plants that will grab your attention even when not in flower - the leaves are so gray they might even be white!  More compact than most other Purple Sages, expect it to reach about 3-4 ft. high and slightly wider - a yearly pruning will keep it dense and beautiful.  Selected by M. Nevin Smith from Figueroa Mtn., this is probably the most cold-tolerant of the purple sages, reportedly tolerating at least 15 degrees F. So let's review, compact and cold-hardy, beautiful white leaves.....I know we're forgetting something.....Oh yeah, the flowers! Lavender-pink blooms show up May into Summer and attract bees, butterflies and hummingbirds.  Full Sun-Light Shade, water deeply once a month during dry season and that's it!

Salvia leucophylla
Purple Sage

Purple Sage is a Ventura County native found all over our local hills, and is one of our favorite native sages for the garden.  In the wild, this gray-leafed native goes for months without rain and drops many of its leaves to protect itself from our dry summers.  In your garden, this plant can look good ALL YEAR with just a little Summer water and a little pruning here and there.  The grey leaves of Purple Sage look awesome with lots of other low-water plants, and the amazing Pink-Violet flowers show up from May-July.  Quickly reaching 3-6 feet high and slightly wider, this versatile plant can tolerate clay soil, lots of heat and is ridiculously low-water.  One of our favorite local natives! Use it like crazy on a slope with purple-flowered Ceanothus, Buckwheat and Toyon for a local garden that will make wildlife happy and your water company mucho sad.

Salvia mellifera
Black Sage

A fast and easy to grow local sage, Black Sage has a sweet and wild scent that reminds folks of a morning walk in the Santa Monica Mountains.  Go ahead and rub the leaves and have a smell........Ahhh, Ventura County.  This extremely low-water plant can look ratty and woody in our hills in Summer, but in your garden it can be a good-looking green shrub all year with just a little water and a little pruning.  Spring-Early Summer brings white-pink-purple flowers that bees and butterflies love, and leaving the dry flower heads supplies local birds with months of food.  Black Sage loves Full Sun but can tolerate a pretty good amount of shade, and quickly grows to 3-5 feet high and wide.  This is one of the most lush and brightest plants in our local hills in Late Fall and Winter.  Plant Local, Enjoy Life!!

Salvia mellifera Selection
'Terra Seca' Black Sage

A hot, dry slope can be a death sentence for a plant.  Think of a hot place lizards or coyotes won't go, then think even hotter than you have an idea of where Black Sage works beautifully.  'Terra Seca' steps it up a notch, with dense, lush leaves that smother the ground and create a groundcover that laughs at heat and drought.  Once a month water during the Summer? No problem!  Full Sun in Ojai.....No problem!  Part Shade in Oxnard in clay soil.....Um.....Heck yes, still no problem!  Late Spring brings nice white-light purple flowers that attract bees and butterflies.  'Terra Seca' grows quickly to 18-30 inches tall and 6-10 ft. wide, and is a natural at growing over large boulders, cascading over walls and generally making native plants look awesome and easy.  Use on slopes with our local Yucca (Our Lord's Candle) and Ashyleaf Buckwheat for a clean look that keeps local wildlife happy. Smells delicious!

Salvia spathacea
Hummingbird Sage

This Ventura County local is one of our favorite natives, and it continues to be one of the most popular California Natives on the market!  Small enough to fit in any garden, it attracts Hummingbirds like crazy from Late Winter to Spring (or longer) with beautiful, FAT Red flower spikes.  The lush evergreen leaves look and smell great and make a pretty nice tea, too!  Spreads underground to form small colonies.  Full Sun or Part Shade on the Coast, Part Shade in hotter areas.  One of our favorite natives to use in large pots, where it forms a lush green carpet that smells sweet and lures hummingbirds.  Very low-water once established, try it with Island Snapdragon and California Fuchsia for a 12-month hummingbird party in part shade.  One of the few natives on the U.C. Davis Arboretum All Stars List (ask us about this great program!) Ask us to point out this beautiful plant in our demonstration gardens.

Verbena lilacina Selection
'De la Mina' Verbena

Yes, this plant is fun to say, and it's also fun and easy to grow!  'De la Mina' Verbena is a unique California native plant, found only on Cedros Island in Baja California.  Growing quickly to 2-3 feet tall and slightly wider, the plant covers itself with colorful purple flowers almost all year! The flowers have a great 'perfume meets chaparral' scent, and they are very attractive to local butterflies.  Doesn't mind heavy clay soils, and needs only once or twice a month water during the summer to look its best.  Try cutting back or dead-heading the plant a few times a year for a clean look.  One of our best native plants for months and months of color, great aromas and attracting wildlife, Highly Recommended!  Check it out in our demo. garden, where it seems to flower 24/7. Thanks to Carol Bornstein from Santa Barbara for selecting and introducing this beautiful native plant.     


Make your own succulent wreaths at Nopalito Nursery

Our amazingly pretty, LIVING succulent wreaths took the nation by storm over Christmas (seriously, we've been getting inquiries from out of state) — and so, for all you wreath-lovers who want to save a few bucks and enjoy the company of other plant geeks, we're going to keep offering monthly wreath-making workshops in 2011.

Once more before April Fool's Day — on Saturday March 26th —  Nopalito's own Rick Sanchez will show you how to make succulent wreaths. The workshop will start at 10am.

So what's to decide? Mark your calendar and call ahead to register. Space is limited!

See our workshops & classes page for all the details.