Fremontodendron californica ssp. californica

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Species Name: Fremontodendron californica ssp. californica
Common Name: California flannel bush

Stunning fremontia with 3" flowers. Recommend in a mixed planting with oaks, ceanothus, bush poppy and mountain mahogany. Needs dry summers once established.

Plant Family: Sterculiaceae
Plant Type: Shrub
Height by Width: 6-15' H x 6-8' W
Growth Habit: Upright, erect
Deciduous/Evergreen: Evergreen
Growth Rate: Fast
Sun Exposure: Full sun
Soil Preference: Well-draining, rocky
Water Requirements: Drought-tolerant
Cold Hardy to: 20 degrees F
Flower Season: Spring/Summer
Flower Color: Yellow-orange
Endangered?: Not listed
Distribution: California Floristic Province, Baja California, AZ
Natural Habitat: Chaparral, oak/pine woodland, rocky ridges from 1300-6500'

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Care and Maintenance

  • Introduced into cultivation in California by Theodore Payne.
  • From California Native Plants, Theodore Payne's 1941 catalog: "Discovered by General John C. Fremont, the pathfinder, while crossing the Sierras, and named in his honor. An evergreen shrub of spreading habit with rather small, generally lobed leaves. The flowers are large, lemon yellow and produced along the branchlets forming long sprays, the blossoms opening out flat something like a Cherokee Rose. the shrubs bloom in spring and the whole bush blossoms simultaneously making a blaze of color. Stands both heat and cold, but requires a well drained soil. Gallon cans, $1.00."
Other Names
  • California Slippery-Elm

  • Bornstein, Carol, David Fross, and Bart O'Brien. California Native Plants for the Garden. Los Olivos, CA: Cachuma Press. 2005.