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CEANOTHUS griseus 'Yankee Point'

Image of Ceanothus griseus var. horizontalis 'Yankee Point'

Bosh Bruening

Family

Rhamnaceae

Botanical Name

CEANOTHUS griseus var. horizontalis 'Yankee Point'

Plant Common Name

Carmel Ceanothus, Carmel Creeper, Yankee Point Ceanothus

General Description

Noted for its extra low-growing habit and high vigor, ‘Yankee Point’ is an older, yet highly popular, cultivar of the California native Carmel Mountain lilac. In fact, it is said to be the most widely planted native groundcover in California. Esteemed horticulturist and former director of the Santa Barbara Botanic Garden, Maunsell Van Rensselaer, first introduced this selection in 1954 after he discovered it at Yankee Point Rock, an insular point off of the Coast of Monterey County.

The broad spreading, low-growing shrub is fully evergreen and has stiff, coarsely arranged branches that reach upwards and outwards. They are lined with rounded, glossy, dark green leaves with deeply set leaf veins that lend a quilted look to the foliage. Puffy, elongated clusters of flowers appear in spring. The tiny, starry blooms are rich blue when they first open and lighten to pale blue as they age. They are attractive to many insect pollinators, particularly bees and butterflies.

Carmel Mountain lilac is adapted to the Oceanside, so it requires high light, excellent drainage and tolerates salt spray. Further inland, it requires some shade from hot afternoon sun. Be careful not to overwater as this can result in rot and eventual plant death. This Ceanothus is frost sensitive, so plant it in frost-free areas.

Use this attractive shrub as a large-scale groundcover. It is particularly suitable for slope stabilization. Deer are attracted to wild lilac and plants are relatively short-lived. On average, they should be replaced every five to 10 years.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    10 - 9

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    9 - 10

  • Sunset Zone

    5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 14, 15, 16, 17, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24

  • Plant Type

    Shrub

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun, Partial Sun

  • Height

    2'-3' / 0.6m - 0.9m

  • Width

    8'-10' / 2.4m - 3.0m

  • Bloom Time

    Spring, Late Spring

  • Native To

    California

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Neutral, Alkaline

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Loam, Sand

  • Tolerances

    Drought, Salt

  • Growth Rate

    Fast

  • Water Requirements

    Drought Tolerant, Average Water

  • Habit

    Prostrate/Trailing

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Showy

  • Flower Color

    Light Blue, Blue Violet

  • Fruit Color

    Sandy Brown

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Winter)

    Dark Green

  • Fragrant Flowers

    Yes

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Flower Petal Number

    Single

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    No

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Foliage Texture

    Medium

  • Foliage Sheen

    Glossy

  • Evergreen

    Yes

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Usage

    Edging, Foundation, Groundcover, Rock Garden / Wall

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Attracts

    Butterflies

  • Self-Sowing

    No