Las Pilitas Nursery

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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 Encinitas 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 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. 

Plant Image Short Description
Arctostaphylos glandulosa adamsii
Arctostaphylos glandulosa adamsii Laguna Manzanita
Laguna manzanita is a sprawling evergreen manzanita shrub that will form a knee high groundcover. ... Learn more
Arctostaphylos insularis
Arctostaphylos insularis Island Manzanita
Island Manzanita is an evergreen shrub to 7', needing sun and good drainage. This one has glossy d... Learn more
Arctostaphylos luciana Adelaide Manzanita
Arctostaphylos luciana Adelaide Manzanita Santa Lucia Manzanita
Santa Lucia Manzanita is a rare, evergreen shrub, 3' by 6' with 1" white leaves and red bark. It gro... Learn more
Arctostaphylos manzanita Dr. Hurd Manzanita Tree
Arctostaphylos manzanita Dr. Hurd Manzanita Tree Northern California Manzanita
Dr. Hurd Manzanita is an evergreen, multi-branched, treelike hybrid shrub with glossy, light green f... Learn more
Arctostaphylos manzanita_x_densiflora Austin Griffiths Manzanita
Arctostaphylos manzanita_x_densiflora Austin Griffiths Manzanita Austin Griifith's Manzanita
Austin Griffiths Manzanita is a hybrid between Arctostaphylos densiflora 'Sentinel' and Arctostaphyl... Learn more
Arctostaphylos purissima Burton Mesa Groundcover
Arctostaphylos purissima Burton Mesa Groundcover Lompoc Manzanita
Evergreen sub-shrub, 2 foot by four foot (the form we grow), on some sites and the one next to it ma... Learn more
Arctostaphylos rainbowensis
Arctostaphylos rainbowensis
Rainbowensis is a lower moundy Big Berried Manzanita. We grew some for a remediation in South River... Learn more
Artemisia ludoviciana
Artemisia ludoviciana White Sagebrush
Artemisia ludoviciana, White Sagebrush is a rhizomatous perennial native from Baja to Ontario Canada... Learn more
Baccharis pilularis consanguinea
Baccharis pilularis consanguinea Coyote Brush
Deer proof throughout Ca. (so-far). You might want to cover it for the first year. Drought tolerant,... Learn more
Balsamorhiza sagittata
Balsamorhiza sagittata Arrowleaf balsamroot
syn Buphthalmum sagittata, Espeletia s., E. helianthoides, Balsamorhiza h.. Arrowleaf balsamroot gro... Learn more
Ceanothus arboreus Owlswood Blue
Ceanothus arboreus Owlswood Blue Island Mtn. Lilac
Evergreen shrub fast to 10', a C. aboreus cultivar-hybrid, deer love these, blue flowers on long spi... Learn more
Ceanothus Concha
Ceanothus Concha California Mountain Lilac
Ceanothus 'Concha' is one of the oldest and best hybrid ceanothus. Ours are 4' high by 4' wide, and ... Learn more
Ceanothus cyaneus
Ceanothus cyaneus San Diego Mtn. Lilac
San Diego Mountain Lilac is a medium sized evergreen shrub that is covered with light blue flowers... Learn more
Ceanothus Ray Hartman
Ceanothus Ray Hartman Mountain Lilac
The Ray Hartman' form of mountain lilac is an evergreen shrub to 20'. The flowers are light to mediu... Learn more
Corethrogyne filaginifolia Silver carpet
Corethrogyne filaginifolia Silver carpet Common Corethrogyne
(Lessingia filaginifolia, Aster filaginifolia, Aster tomentellius, Aplopappus haenkei, Corethrogyne ... Learn more
Deschampsia elongata
Deschampsia elongata
A grass that disappears in summer(drops to a faint brown patch), a light grass that blows in the bre... Learn more
Diplacus puniceus
Diplacus puniceus Red Monkey Flower
Red monkey flower is a two foot high evergreen shrub with red flowers most of the year. The species... Learn more
Dodecatheon clevelandii
Dodecatheon clevelandii
Small perennial, goes dormant in summer, has a 1 foot high flower cluster with 1/2 inch shooting sta... Learn more
Dudleya lanceolata
Dudleya lanceolata Liveforever
Dudleya lanceolata is an one foot tall and wide succulent,native to central and southern Californi... Learn more
Eriogonum parvifolium
Eriogonum parvifolium Cliff Buckwheat
A perennial, 2 ft. by 2 ft.. Native near coast from Monterey to San Diego, shade to sun, red-green f... Learn more
Gnaphalium californicum
Gnaphalium californicum California Pearly Everlasting
A native biennial or short-lived perennial that grows in disturbed places.This species is a pioneer ... Learn more
Koeleria macrantha
Koeleria macrantha June Grass
A small perennial grass that looks like it belongs in a Japanese Garden. Although it grows in pine w... Learn more
Lepechinia fragrans
Lepechinia fragrans Wallaces Pitcher Plant
An evergreen perennial shrub like Lepechinia calycina but flower is pink and leaves a little fuzzie... Learn more
Malacothamnus clementinus
Malacothamnus clementinus San Clemente Bush Mallow
Native to San Clemente Is. where it grows on rocky caynon walls(probably hiding from the feral anima... Learn more
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Muhlenbergia montana Mountain Muhly
A small little perennial that grows in our western mountains.The most likely place to find Mountain ... Learn more

Ribes speciosum
Ribes speciosum Fuchsia-Flowering Gooseberry
Fuchsia flowering or fuchsia flowering gooseberry is a four foot nearly evergreen shrub with red fu... Learn more

Ribes viburnifolium
Ribes viburnifolium Evergreen Currant
Catalina Perfume or Evergreen currant is a two to three foot evergreen perennial shrub that can gro... Learn more

Salvia Daras Choice
Salvia Daras Choice
A hybrid between Salvia mellifera and Salvia sonomensis. Dara's Choice grows 3' tall and 3' across ... Learn more

Satureja chandleri
Satureja chandleri Shrubby Yerba Buena
(Calamintha chandleri (Smith & Berg) A 1 to 2 feet high by 3 foot perennial with very fragrant fol... Learn more

Sisyrinchium bellum
Sisyrinchium bellum Blue-Eyed Grass
Blue-eyed Grass. Sisyrinchium bellum is a 1 foot tall perennial with 1 inch blue flowers in Jan.-Ju... Learn more

Stipa comata
Stipa comata Needle and thread grass
Needle and thread is a tufted little perennial grass that is probably the most wide ranging bunch gr... Learn more

Symphoricarpos mollis
Symphoricarpos mollis Southern California Snowberry
Creeping Snowberry grows on north slopes, in ravines, and sometimes is all that's left of an oak woo... Learn more

Viguiera laciniata
Viguiera laciniata San Diego Sunflower
A very floriferous perennial sub-shrub that grows in southern San Diego County. In many gardens it w... Learn more

Zauschneria californica Ghostly Red
Zauschneria californica Ghostly Red Red California Fuchsia
(Epilobium canum) A one foot high grey-green leaved perennial California native hummingbird fuchsia.... Learn more