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A Manzanita Resource Guide

Articles: A Manzanita Resource Guide

No other shrub is more symbolic of the Pacific Coast than manzanita (Arctostaphylos). From British Columbia to Baja, one species to many are endemic from the beaches to the mountains. Comprising more than fifty species and dozens of cultivars, they are one of the most distinctive shrubs of the far West, familiar to campers and hikers but little known in Pacific Northwest gardens—beyond the ubiquitous groundcover kinnikinnick (A. uva-ursi).

Paul Bonine has been growing a wide variety of shrubby manzanitas at Xera Plants, his wholesale nursery in Oregon’s Willamette Valley, and has been delighted to see them capture the imagination of Northwest gardeners. Once thought of as finicky in the region, it turns out that many including, those native to California, are ideally adapted to the Northwest’s naturally dry summers, and are surprisingly tolerant of winter cold as well. In California—where the majority of species are native, and where a multitude of cultivars are readily found in nurseries and at plant sales—they have long been recognized as valuable garden shrubs and have gained a staunch following among native plant enthusiasts. What they offer to gardeners in the Pacific North...

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