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Drought tolerant plants for a Oakland area 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 or the internal search on laspilitas.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.
This partial search is full sun, with adobe soil, no water after first summer, and shredded redwood bark as mulch.

Thoss of you thta live in the East Bay, Oakland, Berkley can wander over to Tilden to check out the native plants. - grid24_12
Plant Image Short Description
Agoseris grandiflora
Agoseris grandiflora Mountain dandelion
Mountain dandelion is a little perennial with large dandelion seed 'balls'. These 'balls' (head of f... Learn more
Arctostaphylos Baby Bear Manzanita Bush
Arctostaphylos Baby Bear Manzanita Bush Manzanita by the baby bear
Dark red bark, bright rose pink flowers, liked by hummingbirds, butterflies, bumblebees and other na... Learn more
Arctostaphylos densiflora Harmony Manzanita
Arctostaphylos densiflora Harmony Manzanita Harmony
Harmony manzanita is an evergreen shrub with pink flowers that commonly grows two or three feet hig... Learn more
Arctostaphylos glandulosa adamsii
Arctostaphylos glandulosa adamsii Laguna Manzanita
... Learn more
Arctostaphylos crustacea eastwoodiana
Arctostaphylos crustacea eastwoodiana Harris Grade manzanita
A very refined manzanita. Foliage is a glossy green. As a groundcover, it is low, 2 1/2 to 3 feet h... Learn more
Arctostaphylos glandulosa-glauca
Arctostaphylos glandulosa-glauca
Evergreen bush, usually about 4' tall. It has 1 1/2" gray leaves, red-brown stems. Amoung the toughe... Learn more
Arctostaphylos glauca Los Angeles
Arctostaphylos glauca Los Angeles Los Angeles Big Berry Manzanita
A Big berry manzanita, Arctostaphylos glauca, from the Santa Monica Mountains. This one was original... Learn more
Arctostaphylos Ian Bush Manzanita
Arctostaphylos Ian Bush Manzanita Manzanita
... Learn more
Arctostaphylos Mama Bear Manzanita
Arctostaphylos Mama Bear Manzanita Mama Bear Manzanita
... 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
... Learn more
Arctostaphylos Margarita Pearl
Arctostaphylos Margarita Pearl Big Big berry manzanita
Margarita Pearl manzanita is a seedling of Arctostaphylos glauca that has very large flowers and ber... Learn more
Arctostaphylos mariposa
Arctostaphylos mariposa Mariposa Manzanita
Mariposa Manzanita is native to the lower margins of the Sierra chaparral community. (see also A. g... Learn more
Arctostaphylos Pacific Mist
Arctostaphylos Pacific Mist
A green-green sprawling groundcover manzanita of hybrid origin. This was planting as the entrance gr... Learn more
Arctostaphylos pechoensis
Arctostaphylos pechoensis Pecho Manzanita
Pecho Manzanita is a rare evergreen shrub that grows to five feet in height on shaly to sand with h... Learn more
Arctostaphylos pilosula pilosula Atascadero Manzanita
Arctostaphylos pilosula pilosula Atascadero Manzanita Santa Margarita Manzanita
This very gray, fuzzy manzanita with red stems grows 3' to 6' in height. It grows in the central c... Learn more
Arctostaphylos pringlei drupacea Idyllwild Manzanita
Arctostaphylos pringlei drupacea Idyllwild Manzanita Pinkbract Manzanita
This manzanita has slightly fuzzy sticky foliage and flowers. Gray foliage starts out kinda brown pi... Learn more
Arctostaphylos pungens
Arctostaphylos pungens Pointleaf Manzanita
Mexican manzanita is an evergreen shrub around six foot tall, (usually taller than wide) that grows ... Learn more
Arctostaphylos silvicola Ghostly Manzanita
Arctostaphylos silvicola Ghostly Manzanita Santa Cruz Manzanita
A very gray almost white-pink plant with red bark. One of the most gray plants I've ever seen, much ... Learn more
Arctostaphylos Sonoma Manzanita Bush
Arctostaphylos Sonoma Manzanita Bush Stanford Manzanita
Sonoma manzanita was not impressive until it flowered. The large pink flowers made quite an impress... Learn more
Arctostaphylos stanfordiana stanfordiana Zin Manzanita
Arctostaphylos stanfordiana stanfordiana Zin Manzanita Napa Manzanita
We planted this manzanita out a few years ago and forgot to label it. The sin of sins in an operatio... Learn more
Arctostaphylos tomentosa subcordata Tranquil Cliff
Arctostaphylos tomentosa subcordata Tranquil Cliff Santa Cruz Island Manzanita
Arctostaphylos subcordata is a manzanita that is supposed to only occur on the channel islands, but ... Learn more
Arctostaphylos viscida ssp. viscida
Arctostaphylos viscida ssp. viscida Whiteleaf manzanita
Whiteleaf manzanita grows from Kern County north to about the Oregon Border. It is not very garden t... Learn more
Artemisia ludoviciana
Artemisia ludoviciana White Sagebrush
Artemisia ludoviciana, White Sagebrush is a rhizomatous perennial native from Baja to Ontario Canada... Learn more
Asclepias fascicularis
Asclepias fascicularis Narrowleaf Milkweed
Narrow-leaved Milkweed has narrow leaves and a wider native range and a whole lot more garden toler... 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
Ceanothus Celestial Blue
Ceanothus Celestial Blue
... 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 Frosty Blue
Ceanothus Frosty Blue Frosty Blue Mountain Blue
Ceanothus Frosty Blue' is an evergreen mountain lilac that grows to six or eight feet tall and about... Learn more
Ceanothus griseus
Ceanothus griseus Carmel Ceanothus
Ceanothus griseus, is a large bush or small tree, with beautiful, large, rounded, shiny dark green ... Learn more
Ceanothus impressus impressus
Ceanothus impressus impressus Santa Barbara Mountain Lilac
Ceanothus impressus impressus is an evergreen six to ten foot shrub with very small 1/4-1/2" leave... Learn more
Ceanothus Remote Blue Ceanothus
Ceanothus Remote Blue Ceanothus Bush Lilac
'Remote Blue' is a hybrid that arose on the nursery grounds, and is believed to be a hybrid between ... Learn more
Ceanothus Tassajara Blue Ceanothus
Ceanothus Tassajara Blue Ceanothus Mountain Lilac
... Learn more
Ceanothus Wheeler Canyon
Ceanothus Wheeler Canyon Blue Mtn. Lilac
A hybrid Ceanothus that looks a great deal like a squat 'Concha'. Flowers are small but numerous. Of... Learn more
Cercocarpus betuloides
Cercocarpus betuloides Mountain Mahogany
Mountain Mahogany is an evergreen shrub, 8', found in Oregon, California, and east to the Rocky Moun... Learn more
Cercocarpus ledifolius
Cercocarpus ledifolius Desert mountain mahogany
Curl leaf mountain mahogany is an evergreen shrub or small tree to 15 feet tall, that grows in deser... Learn more
Cupressus forbesii
Cupressus forbesii Tecate Cypress
Tecate cypress is native to the southern California mountains looking down into Tijuana. It is fas... Learn more
Cupressus goveniana ssp. goveniana
Cupressus goveniana ssp. goveniana Gowen Cypress
Gowen cypress is a shrubby tree to 15'. Native to Pacific Grove, Pebble Beach Ca. where it grows on ... Learn more

Cupressus sargentii
Cupressus sargentii Sargent Cypress
In the wild a small evergreen tree. In most gardens it will grow real fast to 10 feet, then slowly (... Learn more
Deschampsia elongata
Deschampsia elongata Slender hairgrass
A grass that disappears in summer(drops to a faint brown patch), a light grass that blows in the bre... Learn more
Diplacus longiflorus Conejo monkey flower
Diplacus longiflorus Conejo monkey flower Conejo Monkey Flower
A BIG monkey flower from the Thousand Oaks Area. This monkey flower can almost be the size of a shru... Learn more
Diplacus puniceus X clevelandii San Diego Sunrise
Diplacus puniceus X clevelandii San Diego Sunrise San Diego Sunrise monkeyflower
Diplacus puniceusX San Diego Sunrise is an attractive monkey flower with red flowers that turn an o... Learn more
Elymus glaucus
Elymus glaucus Blue Wildrye
A big grass that grows in open meadows, fields, ditch banks, road cuts, etc.. Beautiful if you are a... Learn more
Eriodictyon californicum
Eriodictyon californicum Yerba Santa
A five ft. perennial shrub. Indians and early settlers used it for cure-all. Now used for soil stabi... Learn more
Eriogonum umbellatum
Eriogonum umbellatum Sulfur Flower
Eriogonum umbellatum, is the lowest of these, it grows only 3 inches tall and 3 foot wide, showy yel... Learn more
Helianthemum scoparium
Helianthemum scoparium Sun Rose
A little non-descript perennial that grows in openings amoungst shrubs,. When it flowers it turns in... Learn more
Helianthus gracilentus
Helianthus gracilentus
A 1' perennial with 2" yellow daisy flowers in May-Oct.. Native to central and south coast ranges. A... Learn more
Iva hayesiana
Iva hayesiana Hayes iva
An evergreen groundcover in warm winter areas, deciduous in colder areas. It is supposed to spread b... Learn more
Keckiella breviflora
Keckiella breviflora Yawning Penstemon
This bush penstemon is a sprawling subshrub that usually props itself up on a rock or neighbor so yo... Learn more
Lonicera interrupta
Lonicera interrupta Chaparral Honeysuckle
A sprawling, deciduous shrub with yellow honeysuckle flowers. Native from central and northern Cali... Learn more
Lonicera subspicata denudata
Lonicera subspicata denudata San Diego Honeysuckle
This native honeysuckle makes a sprawling ground cover grows at the drip line of coast live oaks, s... Learn more
Lupinus albifrons
Lupinus albifrons Silver Bush Lupine
A 3-5' perennial. The flowers 3" blue spikes on a white-silver bush. Many varieties range from S. Or... Learn more
Mahonia haematocarpa
Mahonia haematocarpa Red barberry
syn.Berberis haematocarpa, Odostemon haematocarpus, .Red barberry grows in favorable spots in our So... Learn more
Malacothamnus densiflorus
Malacothamnus densiflorus Many Flowered Bushmallow
Malacothamnus densiflorus, or dense flowered bush mallow, grows from San Diego up to the west slopes... Learn more
Malacothamnus jonesii
Malacothamnus jonesii San Luis Obispo Bush Mallow
Jones' Bush Mallow San Luis Obispo County Bush Mallow is a five foot tall gray evergreen shrub wit... Learn more
Penstemon centranthifolius
Penstemon centranthifolius Scarlet Bugler
Penstemon centranthifolius Is an one to two foot perennial with a 2-4' spike of one to two inch ... Learn more
Penstemon heterophyllus
Penstemon heterophyllus Foothill Penstemon
Foothill Penstemon is a rather long lived(30 years?) perennial with hundreds of one inch violet flow... Learn more
Penstemon Margarita BOP
Penstemon Margarita BOP Margarita BOP Penstemon
Penstemon 'Margarita BOP' is a nice tidy perennial that looks like candy tuft or a dwarf boxwood whe... Learn more
Penstemon speciosus
Penstemon speciosus Sagebrush Penstemon
A 2' perennial with 1-2" sky blue flowers, May-July. Native to southeastern Sierra Nevada to Wash., ... Learn more
Pinus coulteri
Pinus coulteri Coulter Pine
Coulter pine is a green to grey conifer that is native to the central and southern coast ranges of C... Learn more
Pinus monophylla
Pinus monophylla Pinyon Pine
A very slow growing conifer. Do not expect 15 ft. in your lifetime. The biggest one we've been able ... Learn more
Pinus ponderosa
Pinus ponderosa Ponderosa Pine
Ponderosa Pine can be fast to 50+ feet in its range. In the nursery here it has grown to 5' in 7 ye... Learn more
Pinus sabiniana
Pinus sabiniana Gray Pine
Gray Pine. Foothill Pine. This conifer grows fast to 45 ft. in 15 years. It can gradually get to 75'... Learn more
Poa fendleriana
Poa fendleriana Mutton Grass
Mutton Grass is so called as it grows a bunch grass in many of the drier plant communities of the we... Learn more
Purshia tridentata
Purshia tridentata Antelope Bitterbrush
Antelope Bitterbrush is a gray small-leaved shrub to six feet. You will generally see it only 4-5 fo... Learn more
Rhus ovata
Rhus ovata Sugar Bush
Rhus ovata, Sugar Bush is an eight foot evergreen shrub that can grow to twelve feet. This native ... Learn more
Ribes californicum
Ribes californicum Hillside Gooseberry
A 3'-5' deciduous shrub. The flowers are white-purple in Feb.-Mar.. Native to the coast ranges. The ... Learn more
Salvia apianaXclevelandii Vicki Romo
Salvia apianaXclevelandii Vicki Romo Vicki Romo white sage
Salvia Vicki Romo was apparently a hybrid between Salvia clevelandii, Salvia apiana, maybe Salvia le... Learn more
Salvia Celestial Blue
Salvia Celestial Blue Purple Sage
Celestial Blue Sage is a hybrid between Salvia clevelandii and Salvia pachyphylla or a three way hy... Learn more
Salvia clevelandii Winifred Gilman Cleveland Sage
Salvia clevelandii Winifred Gilman Cleveland Sage Musk Sage
... Learn more
Salvia pachyphylla
Salvia pachyphylla Rose Sage
Rose Sage is a 3 foot tall shrub with attractive blue flowers in showy purple bracts. This sage is s... Learn more
Salvia spathacea Las Pilitas
Salvia spathacea Las Pilitas Las Pilitas Hummingbird Sage
A Hummingbird Sage from the Las Pilitas area that was found growing under chamise (Adenostoma fascic... Learn more
Symphoricarpos albus laevigatus
Symphoricarpos albus laevigatus Common Snowberry
... Learn more
Symphoricarpos longiflorus
Symphoricarpos longiflorus Desert Snowberry
(synonym:Symphoricarpos fragrans) Desert Snowberry is a small-leaved plant with dainty, pink tubula... Learn more
Trichostema lanatum
Trichostema lanatum Woolly Blue Curls
Woolly Blue Curls is a three to four foot evergreen shrub with flowers violet in fuzzy spikes in Ma... Learn more
Venegasia carpesioides
Venegasia carpesioides Canyon Sunflower
Canyon Sunflower is a rather large perennial with two inch yellow sunflowers. Canyon Sunflower look... Learn more
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Edited on Jan 04, 2014. Authors:
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