Plant Description Page Selection (alphabetical by botanical name) | A-C | D-L | M-P | Q-Z |
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Acer circinatum (Vine Maple)
Small, sometimes multi-stemmed deciduous tree that grows 10 to 15 feet tall by 20 feet wide. Good native replacement for Japanese maple. Found in moist woods with dappled shade and along stream banks. Can grow in full sun with extra water. More vine-like in shade, shrub or tree form in full sun. Umbels of small reddish purple flowers bloom in spring, followed by winged two-seeded red fruit called a samara. Leaves turn bright red-orange in the fall. An important wildlife tree.
FRUIT/SEED LEAVES FLOWERS
Achillea millefolium (Yarrow)
Perennial with fragrant, fernlike foliage and 3 inch white flowers in tight heads rising 1 to 2 feet high. Commonly flowers in May to June. Drought tolerant and can be used as a lawn substitute. Excellent cut flower and a good dried flower for winter bouquets. Wonderful for butterfly gardens and a good re-seeder.
Actaea rubra (Red Baneberry)
Fast growing native perennial grows 1 to 3 feet tall by 12 to 15 inches wide. Found in moist woods, stream banks and clearings in low to sub-alpine elevations. Prefers cool, moist and fertile soil in partial shade. Has attractive green divided leaves and clusters of tiny white flowers that bloom in May to June. Showy, yet very poisonous red berries follow the delicate flowers.
Agastache occidentalis (Western Giant-Hyssop)
Native to the eastern side of the Cascade Mountains of Oregon and Washington, this member of the mint family prefers open sunny slopes but will flourish in the landscape setting also. Compact plant to 20 inches tall bears dense spikes of lavender-blue flowers. Very attractive to bees and butterflies. Does not spread as do other members of the mint family.
Allium cernuum (Nodding Onion)
Native onion that thrives in challenging sites such as hot sun and gravely soil. Very drought tolerant, once established and a low maintenance plant. Grows 10 to 12 inches tall by 8 to 10 inches wide. Does best in full sun and well-drained soil, but will tolerate light shade. Nodding pink-lilac flowers bloom mid to late summer and attract butterflies, bees, and birds. The bulbs and leaves were once used in cooking or eaten raw, but are not used as often today.
Amelanchier alnifolia (Serviceberry)
Very hardy deciduous shrub that grows 6 to 10 feet tall and prefers full sun. Delicate 2-inch white flower clusters bloom spring to early summer, and are followed by pea size purple fruits that are enjoyed by a variety of wildlife. Fruits were also used by native groups to improve the flavor of less desirable berries. Great for pies and preserves. Pretty blue-green foliage turns a brilliant red and yellow in fall.
Anaphalis margaritacea (Pearly Everlasting)
Native clump forming perennial grows 2 feet tall by 2 feet wide. Prefers full to sun-part shade. Does best in fertile well-drained soil, but will grow in many soil types. Silvery, wooly foliage with clusters of papery white flowers that bloom mid-summer to fall. Flowers work well fresh cut or dried. Great source of nectar for bees and butterflies. It is also a host plant for painted lady butterflies; adults lay eggs on plants and larvae feed on the foliage.
Aquilegia caerulea (Colorado Blue Columbine)
Short lived but hardy re-seeding perennial grows 18 inches to 24 inches tall in sun to part shade. Large upright long-spurred blue and white, and occasionally all white, flowers bloom May to June, sometimes sporadically flowering through to August. Found in moist woods and open, mountain meadows, the flowers provide nectar for insects and hummingbirds.
Aquilegia formosa (Western Red Columbine)
Aquilegia comes from the Latin word aquil, meaning eagle, referring to the shape of the petals. Formosa means beautiful. Indeed, our native columbine fits this description. A short-lived perennial that grows 2 to 3 feet tall by 18 inches wide. Red spurred flowers with yellow centers bloom spring through early summer. Prefers full sun or filtered shade and fertile, moist and well-drained soil. A good nectar source for hummingbirds, bees and butterflies. Birds, such as finches and sparrows, eat the seeds.
Aruncus dioicus (Goatsbeard)
Does best when grown in moist, rich soil in either part sun or part shade. Good for around ponds or along streams, but happy in any moist soil. Grows to 6 feet tall and 4 feet wide. Flower spikes resemble astilbe flowers, but are larger and usually cream colored. Blooms in late spring to early summer. After flowers fade, leaves provide a great background for later blooming plants.
Asarum caudatum (Wild Ginger)
Native evergreen groundcover that prefers shade to partial shade and consistently moist soil. Great for a woodland settings. Spreads by shallow rhizomes. Has glossy dark green heart shaped leaves and interesting deep maroon flowers that bloom Spring to Summer. Flowers are not very noticeable as they grow under the leaves along the ground. The roots can be used as ginger. Native Americans had many medicinal uses for the plant; using it for headaches, indigestion, arthritis, a general tonic and much more.
Asclepias cordifolia (Heartleaf Milkweed)
Native perennial growing 2 to 3 feet tall and wide. Prefers full sun and can be used in xeriscape gardening. Violet flowers bloom in summer above green-purple foliage. A favorite plant of butterflies, as they are a food and nectar source for the Monarch butterfly. They also attracts hummingbirds, and are not liked by deer. Good for planting under oaks, as it does not compete for water or nutrients.
Asclepias speciosa (Showy Milkweed)
Beautiful native milkweed that grows 2 to 4 feet tall, and prefers full sun. The flowers are white and pink and come up in large, attractive umbels at the top of the stems. Can tolerate poor, dry soils. The sap from the milkweed deters deer from eating it, and that same sap is very attractive to Monarch butterflies, who will lay their eggs on the stems and the leaves. Very easy to grow.
Asclepias tuberosa (Butterfly Milkweed)
Herbaceous perennial growing 1 to 2 feet tall. Showy bright salmon to yellow-orange flowers, high in nectar, blooms early summer to early fall and attracts all types of butterflies. Leaves are food for the Monarch and Queen butterfly. Prefers full sun to light shade. Drought tolerant.
Aster subspicatus (Douglas' Aster)
This patch-forming rhizomatous perennial wildflower has daisy-like purple flowers with yellow centers that bloom late summer. Grows 24 to 30 inches tall. Prefers full sun and well-drained soil. Douglas' Aster is a wildflower of stream banks and other moist places.
Camassia leichtlinii v. suksdorfii (Great Camas)
This late spring to early summer bloomer has large blue spiked flowers. It can also be white to beige colored (see Camassia leichtlinii Alba). Growing 3 to 4 feet tall by 15 to 18 inches wide, it is larger than the Common Camas. Prefers full sun to partial shade and is native to moist meadows and marshes.
Camassia leichtlinii v. leichtlinii (White Great Camas)
Native perennial with 3 foot tall spikes of creamy white star shaped flowers that bloom in late spring. Found in damp mountain meadows, they like moisture throughout the spring and early summer while flowering, followed by a dry dormancy. Prefers full sun to part shade and does well in heavier soils. It is not to be confused with the White Camas known as death camas.
Camassia quamash (Common Camas)
Native bulb with grass-like leaves and light blue to purple blooms that bloom in the spring on spikes to 2 feet tall. Prefers full sun and tolerates areas with seasonal flooding. Smaller than the Great Camas. This camas was an important food source for Native Americans in the Pacific Northwest region.
Ceanothus gloriosus (Point Reyes Ceanothus)
Evergreen groundcover growing 2 to 3 feet tall by 6 feet wide. Has dark green foliage and lavender-blue flowers that attract butterflies. Prefers sun to part sun. A fairly fast grower. Leaves are less palatable to deer than other ceanothus varieties.
Ceanothus sanguineus (Red Stem Ceanothus)
A small deciduous shrub that grows in-between the forest trees. Grows 3 to 10 feet tall, prefering sun to partial shade and does well on dry or moist well-drained soil. Small fragrant white to pinkish flowers bloom in clusters up to 4 inches long in May to July. After leaf fall, the reddish stems look stunning in the winter landscape. It is a larval host for the Pale Swallowtail butterfly.
Cercis occidentalis (Western Redbud)
Deciduous shrub or small tree that grows to 15 feet tall. Prefers full sun and some summer water for faster growth and is tolerant of clay soils. Pink to violet flowers bloom February to April and usually emerge before the glossy heart shaped leaves. Reddish-purple seedpods hang on tree in winter. Flowers and young pods are edible. Native people of California used the twigs of this shrub to weave baskets and the bark to dye the finished baskets a faint reddish color.
Cornus alba 'Gouchaultii' (Yellow Variegated Dogwood)
Deciduous shrub with pink and yellow-edged mid-green leaves that grows 6 to 10 feet tall and wide. Prefers full sun to part shade. Yellow-white flower clusters bloom late spring and are followed by blue-white berries in summer. Bright red stems brighten the winter landscape. This is a good wildlife shrub.
Cornus nuttallii (Pacific Dogwood)
Deciduous tree native to western North America that grows to 40 feet tall by 25 feet wide. Greenish flowers, tipped with purple, grow in tight clusters surrounded by 4 to 7 large, showy, white bracts in spring and sometimes again in fall. Clusters of bright red, drupe-shaped .5 inch long berries follow the flowers and ripen in October. Prefers sun to part shade and well-drained soil.
Cornus sericea (Red Twig Dogwood)
Great deciduous shrub for wet areas grows 8 to 12 feet tall and wide and prefers sun to part shade. Large clusters of small white flowers bloom late spring to early summer and attract bees and butterflies. White berries (or drupes) are an important food source for birds and follow the flowers. Leaves are medium green and turn golden-reddish in fall. Bright red stems create interest in the winter garden.