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VAUQUELINIA californica

Image of Vauquelinia californica

Family

Rosaceae

Botanical Name

VAUQUELINIA californica

Plant Common Name

California Spirea

General Description

Lush evergreen foliage and decorative white spring flowers are among the merits of this large shrub or small tree from Mexico and Arizona. Its upright branches are furnished with leathery green lance-shaped leaves with toothed edges and silvery undersides and midveins. Flat heads of small creamy white flowers appear at the branch tips for several weeks in late spring. They give rise to persistent reddish-brown seed capsules. This member of the rose family naturally forms a rounded shrub but can be trained into a single or multi-trunked tree with picturesque twisted branches.

This remarkably cold-hardy high-desert native does best in full sun or light shade and well-drained soil. It fares poorly in damp climates. Although quite drought tolerant, it appreciates occasional watering during summer. Use it for hedging or screening, in borders or naturalistic plantings, or as a small specimen tree.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    10 - 6

  • Sunset Zone

    10, 11, 12, 13

  • Plant Type

    Broadleaf Evergreen

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun, Partial Sun

  • Height

    10'-25' / 3.0m - 7.6m

  • Width

    9'-20' / 2.7m - 6.1m

  • Bloom Time

    Spring, Late Spring

  • Native To

    Southwestern United States, Mexico

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral, Alkaline

  • Soil type

    Loam, Sand

  • Growth Rate

    Medium

  • Water Requirements

    Drought Tolerant

  • Habit

    Oval/Rounded

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Showy

  • Fragrant Flowers

    No

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    Yes

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    No

  • Evergreen

    Yes

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Usage

    Feature Plant, Hedges, Mixed Border, Screening / Wind Break

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Self-Sowing

    No