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California Native Plants for Coastal Gardening

If you find yourself in August barely breaking a sweat and feeling a cooling breeze laced with the faintest hint of salt you have probably landed yourself a highly coveted Coastal Garden! Native plant choices that will flourish and enliven your garden are seemingly endless!

Listed here are just some of the many plants that will give your garden it’s sense of place, identifying it as a coastal California paradise. Transforming your garden with the use of natives and regionally appropriate plants will bring butterflies, birds and pollinators of all sorts as you create for them a true coastal habitat. So let the sound of the waves and the onshore breeze inspire you to turn your garden into your own beach retreat!

*regionally appropriate nonnative, ASH afternoon shade, SH shade

Tips for Planting

  • Plant fall through spring, your success rate will be much higher than mid summer planting
  • When planting avoid the heat of the day and heat waves
  • Backfill with moist soil when planting
  • When establishing a plant they will need more water than
    published requirements
  • Pick up or download our planting guide or watch our
    planting video before putting plants into the ground
  • Micro-climates are areas in your yard that don’t conform to
    average climate conditions and should be noted before planting (i.e. full sun site but even hotter than average due to reflected sun from walls and no air movement)
  • Water deeply to reach the bottom of the root ball

Water 2x – 4x a Month

Botanical NameCommon NameSize/Shape/Habit
Antigonon leptopusSan Miguel coral vineClimbing
Carex pansaCalifornia meadow sedge1’x2’
Erigeron glaucus (selections)Seaside Daisy1’x 2’
Festuca californicaCalifornia fescue2-3′ x 2-3′
Fragaria chiloensisBeach strawberry1′ x spreading
Heliotropium curassavicum Salt heliotrope<11′
Limonium californicumCoastal statice1′ x 2′
Stachys bullataHedge nettle1′ x spreading

Water 1-2′ per month

Botanical NameCommon NameSize/Shape/Habit
Abronia maritimaRed sand verbena<1’x 6’
Arctostaphylos sp.Manzanitawide size range
Armeria maritimaSea pink1’x 1’
Artemisia sp.Sagebrushwide size range
Baccharis ‘Pigeon Point’Prostrate coyote bush1-2’x 8’
Ceanothus sp.California lilacwide size range
Cneoridium dumosumBush rue 3-5’x5’
Corethrogyne filaginifolia californicaAster1’x4-6’
Eriophyllum confertiflorumGolden yarrow2’x3’
Erysimum menziesiiMenzies’ wildflower1’x2’
Frangula (Rhamnus) californicaCoffeeberry5-15’x 10’
Gambelia sp.- Bush SnapdragonBush snapdragon3’x 2-5’
Heuchera sp.Coral bells1-2’x 1-2’ SH
Iris Pacific Coast HybridsIrises1’x 2’ SH
Isocoma menziesiiGoldenbush1-3’x 3’
Monardella villosaCoyote mint2’x 2’
Salvia sp.Sageswide size range
Symphyotrichum chilenseCalifornia aster1-2’x3’
Verbena lilacinaLilac verbena2-3’x 4’

Water 1x a Month

Botanical NameCommon NameSize/Shape/Habit
Ambrosia chamissonisSand bur1-3’x 5’
Atriplex lentiformisCoastal quail brush4-8’x 10’
Baccharis pilularis ssp consanguineaCoyote brush8’x 8’
Calystegia macrostegiaIsland morning gloryclimbing
Camissoniopsis cheiranthifoliaBeach primrose1’x 3’
Leptosyne giganteaGiant coreopsis3-4’x 2’
Dudleya sp.Live-forever,1’x 2’
Elymus ‘Canyon Prince’Canyon Prince wild rye,3-4’x 3’
Encelia californicaCoast sunflower3’x 4’
Epilobium sp.California fuchsia1-3’ x spreading
Eriogonum sp.Buckwheatwide size range
Iva hayesianaSan Diego marsh elder1-3’x5’
Lyonothamnus floribundus asplenifoliusCatalina ironwood20-35’x 15’
Malosma laurinaLaurel sumac8-15’ x 12’
Mirabilis laevisWishbone bush2’ x 3’
Peritoma arboreaBladderpod3-5’x 5’
Quercus sp.Oakswide size range
Rhus integrifoliaLemonade berry5-15’ x 10+’