Las Pilitas Nursery

California Native Plants are all we grow!

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3232 Las Pilitas Rd
Santa Margarita, CA 93453

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This website is dedicated to Bert Wilson. His genius continues to inspire us.

Drought tolerant plants for a  Vista or San Marcos Garden.

In the 1500's California went through an 80 year drought. During the winter there were blizzards in Central California, the Salinas river froze solid where it flowed into the Monterey Bay. During the summer there was no humidity, no rain, and temperatures in the hundreds for many  months. During one year in the 1840's there was no measurable rain in Santa Barbara. (The highest measured rainfall in an hour also was in Southern California,  11 inches in an hour)  The same native plants that lived through that are still on the hillsides of California. California native plants that do not normally live in the creeks and ponds are very drought tolerant.
The best way to find your plant is to check www.mynativeplants.com and do not water at all. But if you want a simple list of drought tolerant plants that can work for your garden here are some. 

Asclepias fascicularis, Narrow-leaf milkweed with Swallowtail butterfly - grid24_6
Milkweeds can jazz up a native garden.
Pozo Surf or Parking Strip without water for years, about at about 8 years old. It seems to grow about 60 cm, 25-30 inches high and 6 ft., 2 meters  wide. The customers in San Diego love this plant. - grid24_6

Baccharis pilularis consanguinea, Pozo Surf Lowly Coyote brush is an attempt to develop some Southern California forms of native plants.
Cupressus forbesii, Tecate Cypress as a  hedge row. No water and the little trees look decent. Reports of 15 ft. in 3 years. - grid24_12
Cupressus forbesii Tecate Cypress
Tecate cypress is native to the southern California mountains looking down into Tijuana
Red  Monkey flowers, Diplacus puniceus flowers grows about San Diego county. - grid24_6
Diplacus puniceus, Red Monkey Flower is a two foot high evergreen shrub with red flowers most of the year.
Encelia californica - California encelia, California brittlebush, bush sunflower  - grid24_6
Encelia californica Coast Sunflower
Perennial shrub, 3-4 ft. high, good large scale ground cover with 2 inch daisy.
We seldom see Toyon berries this ripe here, the birds eat them when they are still green. - grid24_6
Heteromeles arbutifolia Toyon or as it's sometimes called, Christmas Berry, or Hollywood.
Lepechinia fragrans, Island Pitcher Sage grows on the island and from Ventura, through Los Angeles into the San Gabriel Mountains.  - grid24_6
Lepechinia fragrans, Wallace's Pitcher Plant
An evergreen perennial shrub like Lepechinia calycina but flower is pink and leaves a little fuzzier.
The Pale Swallowtail butterfly loves Monardella villosa, Coyote Mint.  - grid24_12
Monardella villosa Coyote Mintis a two-foot-high perennial with gray-green leaves and light purple clusters of flowers in summer. This Monardella is native to the California coast ranges. This coyote mint likes part ...
The Pale Swallowtail butterfly loves Monardella villosa, Coyote Mint.  - grid24_12
Monardella villosa Coyote Mintis a two-foot-high perennial with gray-green leaves and light purple clusters of flowers in summer.
Muhlenbergia rigens,  Deer Grass, is shown here with flowering stalks on the edge of a garden path. This native grass has all sorts of uses. - grid24_6
Muhlenbergia rigens Deer Grass
Deer grass is a 3 foot perennial with 2 foot plumes rising above the plant.
Rhus ovata, Sugar Bush in the garden. What a great hedge plant. Although it is sometimes called flammable, it is less flammable than most commonly watered garden shrubs, and it needs no water in most of Southern California, in particular Los Angeles. - grid24_6
Rhus ovata Sugar Bush
Rhus ovata, Sugar Bush is an eight foot evergreen shrub that can grow to twelve feet.
Ribes specosum, Fuchsia flowered Gooseberry,  in flower with Anna Hummingbird up in left corner - grid24_6
Ribes speciosum Fuchsia-Flowering Gooseberry
Fuchsia flowering or fuchsia flowering gooseberry is a four foot nearly evergreen shrub with red fuchsia-like flowers in Jan.-May.
California fuchsia works well in California gardens from San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego and into Fresno. - grid24_6
California Fuchsia, Zauschneria or Epilobium is loved by hummingbirds, butterflies and people.