What are you favorite Arctostaphylos and/or Ceanothus and why?
For a ceanothus, I suppose I'd have to pick the one I planted as a low growing ground cover - it's Point Reyes. I may be looking for a "Valley Violet" this fall, though. If I had more room, I'd definitely go for Concha, though.
On the manzanita front, I'd like to share this recent LA Times article.
Here is a link that might be useful: Franciscan
My favorite Ceanothus is Dark Star. It is not a real strong grower, has the tiniest curled leaves, with the brightest electric blue flowers. For a ground cover the Carmel Creeper has done very well, eventually growing to about four feet high. My favorite manzanita is 'Louis Edmunds' delicate pink flowers turning to berries the birds could "die" for. I will someday taste one myself, as they must be delicious. For a ground cover the 'Emerald Carpet' is a beauty that clings to the earth with bright green foliage. Al
My favorite ceanothus is probably julia phelps, because of the beautiful blue flowers that it has, more intense than any other. It is also quite attractive as a landscape shrub even when not in bloom. There are so many choices for both of these natives and Nevin Smith of Suncrest Nursery has written and excellent book that also addresses your question, and I highly recommend reading it.
Kelpmermaid, that article is amazing...I teared up a little...
Bahia, I have Nevin Smith's Native Treasures book. Is that the book you mean?
I have a weakness for ceanothus, maybe because I love blue and easy care plants. I like the substance of the various dark green foliages. And I like to have plants for the bees, and ceanothus is a bee magnet!
I fell in love with Julia Phelps for its delicate beauty as well, but noticed it took quite a while to start growing compared to Dark Star. I planted 5 plants 14 months ago from 4" pots. The 3 Julia Phelps are only about 1 ft. tall now and the Dark Stars are about 4 ft. tall and 5 ft wide already.
i think I read somewhere that Julia phelps is particularly sensitive to alkaline soils, maybe that is why?
Frosty Blue is already at least 8 ft. from gallon pots planted a year ago, its seeming to be tree like, at my last place it grew way slower.
And I love Ray Hartman as a small tree, its a showstopper in bloom.
I bought a tuxedo on a whim and it is a nice contrast to the others, with its dark foliage.
My only regret from planting all the ceanothus, and some toyons with it, is i have no room for manzanitas. I especially would like to plant Dr. Hurd if I had a spot.
Billiame, would you be digging in the graveyard or driving the getaway car? LOL!
I grow about 40 different Ceanothus varieties. 'Gentian Plume' is my favorite, a fast grower and the flower heads are large similar to Garden Lilac.
This post was edited by gotsomerice on Tue, Apr 2, 13 at 20:20
My favorite Manzanita is the McMinn x Viscida hybrid named Little Sandy. It is the closest thing to our native A. viscida that I have been able to keep alive haha!