Olea europa 'Swan Hill'     FRUITLESS OLIVE  (not currently in production)    very old trees, West Cliff Drive   parking lot   old garden specimen  a fruitless variety, producing almost no pollen, which also means little or no allergy, no sneezing, no messy fruit, no obnoxious masses of Olive Fruit Flies emerging from bloated fruit. Therefore it's a great landscape variety! Grafted onto Fusarium-resistant rootstock it will reach typical full olive tree size, eventually, perhaps 12-15' tall without much pruning. Olives are beautiful ornamental trees, bringing old world charm and ambience to Mediterranean or formal-themed gardens and landscapes. Use them for their buttressed trunks, usually moderate size in the landscape, great adaptability to soil and watering schedules, and (now) clean habits when planted near patios and walkways. Sun, warm dry soils, good drainage. They want at least half a day of full sun and can tolerate very tough conditions if they have to. USDA zone 8. Mediterranean. Oleaceae. rev 10/2019

‘Fruitless Beauty’   FRUITLESS OLIVE (not currently in production)   very old trees, West Cliff Drive   parking lot   old garden specimen   newly off-patent, this sterile variety is another way to solve the problem of Olive Fruit Fly-infested fruit making a mess of your pavement. It also solves the problem of making your own home-cured olives, unfortunately. But if you have lived through the misery of seeing every. single. fruit. infested by maggots, which is anybody with an olive tree in California these days, and until they come up with an easy solution, and I mean a really easy solution, this is probably the best route for anyone who wants an olive tree but isn't a commercial grower. rev 10/2019

Omphalodes cappadocica   (not currently in production)    closeup   habit   evergreen perennial related to Myosotis and Brunnera. This is, along with Brunnera, the cleanest, most presentable and persistent member of the Forget-Me-Not family in common cultivation. It is hard to find those wonderful blue flowers on a plant that remains presentable, but this is one of the two that does it. It shows narrow, horizontally spreading, dark green lance shaped leaves to 4" long, often with dark blue purple tones underneath or on the petioles. Clouds of deep sky blue flowers cover the plant in spring, with scattered flowers in summer and fall. It almost always remains presentable all year. Part shade to shade, average to little watering, frost hardy. Asia Minor. Boraginaceae. rev 9/2011

Onion, Egyptian Walking  EGYPTIAN or WALKING ONION  (not currently in production)    young quarts  you can have chopped green onion for your baked potatoes now, in winter, while the chives are still deciduous, with these very entertaining Alliums! No bulb is formed at the bottom, these topsetters have a cluster of small bulbs on top of the stalk, and sometimes the topsets get topsets too! If not harvested for pickling or salads, the weight of them makes the stalk fall to the ground and they will root, hence the 'walking onion!' Too easy to grow, sun and regular watering. Takes cold, all Sunset zones/USDA 5. Botanically Allium cepa. rev 2/2014-Suzy Brooks

Onoclea sensibilis  SENSIBLE FERN, BEAD FERN  juvenile foliage   a single species of deciduous fern native to the eastern US, though some authorities consider it to be a complex of five closely related species. In spring it emerges with lush, coarsely divided bright green sterile fronds to almost 3' long (warm, wet, humid conditions) produced intermittently from a creeping rhizome. In summer shorter vertical fertile fronds appear, with ornamental round spore-bearing structures (sori) which look like beads. Known as Sensitive Fern,' the species name actuallly transliterates to a better and more accurate version, Sensible Fern, which I used here. After all, it was named for its habit of going deciduous early in Eastern climates, beating the first winter freeze by sensibly going dormant ahead of time. Widely distributed in Eastern Asia and the eastern half of the US, naturalized in the cooler/wetter areas of Northern Europe. Onocleaceae/Aspleniacae, depending on the source. rev 8/2020

Onychium japonicum   (not currently in production)  CARROT TOP FERN, CLAW FERN      leafy greens   a durable, very finely divided fern, with deep blue green color shading lighter on the edges of the new fronds. It is tougher than it looks, being rather frost hardy (but deciduous with cold). If you want the Squirrel's Foot Fern look but don't have the protected site, this will do much the same thing. To about 2' tall, spreading slowly and in an orderly fashion. USDA zone 8/Sunset zones 7-9, 12-24. rev 8/2020

Ophiopogon   about 65 species of herbaceous, perennial grass-like plants, with three species currently represented in the trade. Compared to the very closely related Liriope the fruit is blue versus black, the ovary is adnate to inferior vs. superior, the stamens are joined at the base to the tepals vs. being free and the tepals themselves are overlapping vs. free. Eastern and Southeastern Asia. Asparagaceae. rev 5/2020 

jaburan   GIANT LIRIOPE    large container   a tough, durable, clumping, grass-like plant related to lilies. The narrow, dark green leaves reach about 30", though plants vary from seed. Lavender-tinted white flowers are borne on stalks that also vary in height, and can be either nestled in foliage or stand just above the leaf tops. Very attractive, shiny dark blue fruit are produced from those flowers, and hold for quite a while before falling. Spreads slowly by rhizomes it should be considered as "non-running," so when used as a groundcover either plant close or use it as an accent plant above a tighter, lower plant such as Vinca minor, Star Jasmine, etc. It does very well as a formal container plant as well. Frost hardy to about 20F, then it begins to die. Japan. rev 5/2020

'Argentovittatus' (vittata)   AZTEC GRASS   nursery plants   white flowers  a lower variegated form of Giant Liriope, this one with wider leaves (to 1/2" across) than the very similar but aggressive Liriope muscari ‘Silver Dragon,’ and with similar shady growing requirements. The major difference is that this is slower, taller (18-24"), flowers are white instead of lavender and as a clumping grower it never becomes "over-enthusiastic," as 'Silver Dragon' (also sold as "Aztec Grass") often does. For small spots this is usually desirable, for larger areas plant on closer centers or switch to the running 'Silver Dragon.' rev 5/202

japonicus ‘Silver Mist’   (not currently in production)   a variegated form of Mondo Grass. The leaves appear much more narrow and graceful than the solid green form because of the variegation. Forms compact clumps of shiny, dark green and creamy white leaves to only about 6" high, spreading slowly but surely by short underground stolons. Will take moderately deep shade but grows fine in full sun with occasional to regular watering. A classy, formal looking groundcover, durable enough for commercial "hardscapes" but nice enough for the home garden. Pale lavender flowers and blue fruit are usually nestled down in the leaves. USDA zone 6/Sunset zones 5-9, 14-24. rev 5/2020

'Pam Harper'  compact clump  a real cutey any time of year. This small clumper only grows 6-8" tall and makes a tidy groundcover in containers or softening the edges of a path. Clean, bright edges on these arching leaves look terrific with rocks, near water features, and in groups. Part sun or shade, regular watering. USDA zone 8/Sunset zones 8, 9, 14-24. rev 10/2012-Suzy Brooks  

planiscapus ‘Nigrescens’   BLACK MONDO GRASS   fall color   ground cover in shade   tiny, shy yet fragrant flowers    glossy, jet-black leaves    dramatic Dream Inn landscape, Santa Cruz    a choice but slow, spreading, grassy perennial, evergreen, staying under 12" tall. Prized for it's glossy, jet-black foliage and tough nature. It is mostly clumping but does spread slowly via very short runners, eventually spreading to form large colonies. Tiny whitish flowers appear intermittently during long days. While this is a very slow plant, it is incredibly tough and always seems to be getting better all the time. It tolerates full sun to deep shade but always holds its incredible foliage color, except for very occasional sports back to green or green-striped forms. In Martha Wiseman's streamside redwood forest garden in Paradise Park, Santa Cruz, it does extremely well with no care. Marty loves dark-foliaged plants and values this as the best black-leaved plant in her garden. Needs at least average drainage and at least some summer watering. This is a great plant for containers large or small, especially when supplying contrasting foliage color to highlight other elements. Frost hardy. Japan. rev 2/2020

Oplismenus hirtellus 'Variegatus'  BASKET GRASS  leaves  a cute little foliage houseplant, container or mixed planting subject, grown for it's soft, luxuriant leaves, green with a white midvein and pinkish or rosy tones as the foliage matures. To only about 12" tall, with noticeable but modest flower spikes produced during short days. Widely distributed, as in found on every continent except Antarctica, also Pacific Islands, also our own Southeast US. A taxonomically confusing species. Not frost hardy, shade or indirect light, water only after at least partial dry-down. Poaceae/Graminae. rev 7/2017

Opuntia   PRICKLY PEAR, BEAVERTAIL CACTUS, NOPALES, CHOLLA   a variable genus with about 120 species and forms ranging from the familiar flat, oval beavertail cactus through very thin-stemmed Pencil Cholla. Many species and forms are found in horticulture though the chollas are especially problematic. Having once found myself with both hands and feet impaled all at once on a dislocated Golden Cholla globule, slowly being cooked to death by the midday desert sun, I recommend they not be used, except carefully in arboreta and botanic gardens, due to their  especially dangerous nature. All have edible fruit, some of excellent quality, though many have thin flesh and spines dense enough to render them useless. Pads are used cooked as nopales. The spines are a problem in most but even spineless forms retain the even-more-obnoxious glochids, small fiberglass-like fibers which surround the base of spines or where spines would be. All must be removed before cooking, or before eating the fruit. North, Central and South America, ranging from central British Columbia east to Massachusetts and Connecticut, east to the Caribbean and the eastern tip of Brazil, west to the Galapagos Islands and south almost to the very tip of South America. Cactaceae. rev 9/2020
 gomei 'Old Mexico'  TEXAS PRICKLY PEAR, OLD MEXICO PRICKLY PEAR   a spineless or low-spine variety of Prickly Pear with somewhat wavy-edged, round-oval, oblong or trapezoidal-shaped, vertically-oriented grey green to blue green pads to 12-16" long. It has raised areoles and showy yellow flowers (in this form) followed by large, sour, dark purple-maroon fruit. Besides being an attractive ornamental this variety is especially valued for those tart ripe fruits, which can be cut into small cubes and used in a high-grade pico de gallo salsa characteristic of the Guadalajara region and areas north. It is a spineless and less sour counterpart to tuna charveña (O. streptocantha) which is similarly employed. Our own Brigido Medrano, facility manager for our Aromas location reports this variety makes excellent quality nopales that are easy to clean as when the almost-spineless pads are harvested at 6" across or less. Our semitruck delivery driver Nacho lately reports that the receiving crews at his stops are buying all the plants before. They've never seen it available here. Many of them just eat the very young, tender, succulent pads whole, raw, unpeeled and uncooked. A spreading grower to 3-4' tall by 6-10' across (or more!) with age, unrestrained, rooting in recumbent stems and pads to increase in size. Full sun, low water use. Experienced growers relate this will tolerate our occasionally long, wet California winters well if it has good drainage. It is native from seasonally flooded areas of the lower Rio Grande river valley in Texas south through nearby Tamaulipas, Mexico. USDA zone 8. rev 9/2020

santa-rita   SANTA RITA PRICKLY PEAR, VIOLET PRICKLY PEAR   why you grow it      habit, I forget where, yes real not Photoshop   Manuel's cold coastal garden, October    sublime    flowers    spines    part shade, Huntington BG?    typical 1g order   very round pads, often small but not always, can be blue green but are usually colored pinkish to deep rose red to violet when hot, cold, dry, stressed, happy or when they just feel like it. Having seen superb specimens in Rand, California, west of Death Valley, you wouldn't think this would do well in cold, foggy, windy, miserable Las Lomas and Aromas near Watsonville but it does. No one told Manuel it wouldn't grow at his house so he planted one and it grew like gangbusters and dosen't mind our winters. To 2-5' tall and wide, like other species increasing in diameter with age as stems age and fall then root in. This species suffers from chronic classification issues and it can be found referenced as O. chlorotica,O.gosseliniana, O. violacea, O. macrocentra and others. Native to Southern Arizona and adjacent Baja California, Chihuahua and Sonora, Mexico. USDA zone 7. rev 8/2020

Origanum  OREGANO  ornamental oreganos are slowly spreading, semievergreen groundcovers and compact perennials. Grown for either distinctive foliage, showy flowers/bracts or both. All have foliage that smells like spaghetti sauce. All like at least half a day of direct sun, good drainage, and less than constant summer watering once established. Most are great in containers. Labiatae/Lamiaceae. rev 8/2018

'Amethyst Falls' (not currently in production)      mauve flower show    an ornamental oregano with chartreuse bracts and purply pink flowers that droop over the sides of pots, hanging baskets, or walls. About 15" talll, it attracts bees and butterflies to your garden into fall. Tought, drought tolerant, undemanding, very frost hardy (grow them anywhere but the Highest Sierra and real desert), there are so many of these hightly beautiful perennials and they all seem to be overlooked simply because they don't start blooming until about mid-summer, when the peak of foot traffic has fallen off. Sun, at least average to well drained soil. All Sunset zones/USDA 5. rev 7/2013

Kirigami   large rosy bracts   an improved ornamental 'Kent's Beauty' type, with even darker magenta pink to rosy purple flower bracts. It is also much more compact, essentially forming a rather dense, compact ball about 12" tall and wide by mid-summer. In color from late June through early fall, then winter deciduous, briefly. Cut stems will hold their color if dried in shade. Sun to part shade, spot color for gardens and landscapes and a natural for containers, even very small ones. USDA zone 5. rev 8/2018

'Monterey Bay'  beautiful flowers    beautiful plant   a chance seedling I found coming up among a block of mixed up leftover one gallon plants. It is apparently a hybrid of O. 'Santa Cruz' and O. dictamnus. It has a flower color close to the very blue pink of 'Santa Cruz' but is slightly redder and easier to place in the landscape. One of the best features of this plant is that if cut at peak flower extrusion the wonderful purple color deepens and holds forever if dried in shade.The leaf is dusty blue green, slightly greyish, rounded, and very slightly tomentose. It begins to bloom in midsummer like all the rest and continues until the weather is cold and dark. To about 18" tall and 2' or more wide if mature and happy. Sun, at least average drainage, prefers mineral soils. Great in containers, borders, rock walls or rock gardens, or even as a combo element. Sunset zones 5-24/USDA zone 7. rev 8/2021   MBN INTRODUCTION-2009 

'Norton Gold'   (not currently in production)   bright gold  the best golden foliage of any ornamental Oregano. This low clump is a glowing beacon in your garden, plus there are the pink flowers on tall stems in summer, attracting bees and butterflies. Nice to dot these around to wake up those green plants. Looks good on the plate as an edible garnish but it's is a little bitter for pure culinary use. Forms a persistent, spreading clump, then dies back in cold areas only to come up fresh and new and clean in spring. Foliage reaches about 12" tall by twice as wide, flower stalks rise to 18-20". Part sun in hot areas, so it doesn't burn, average watering first year but much less once established. USDA zone 6/Sunset zones 2-24. rev 8/2018

vulgare ‘Aurea’ (not currently in production)    GOLDEN MARJORAM   in part shade   rose pink flowers   this is a reliably perennial, compact, excellent alternative to Golden Oregano, without any of that plant's tendency to die out. It forms a mat of light green foliage which becomes suffused with gold during the summer months as long as it receives at least half a day of sunlight. White flowers are rarely seen. Evergreen in mild winters. rev 8/2009

Orostachys iwarenge   (not currently in production)      wonderful form    Oz flowers   buds   an intriguing and cute little critter, Suzy sez as cute as "a baby bunny, or baby turtle." [her words, not mine - Ed.]  Little lavender grey rosettes look like small rose buds.  Those fall flowers come up in little towers that are so unique, and being monocarpic, those rosettes die. But the new little clusters that grew on the thin runners have their turn. It's a wonderful thing. Sun near the coast, part shade inland. Likes well drained soil, little water. Adorable in its own pot up close where it can be admired and combines well with others. Related to Sempervivum. All Sunset zones/USDA 5. Japan. Crassulaceae. rev 6/2011

Orthrosanthus  MORNING IRIS   a group of usually evergreen clumping rhizomatous perennials related to Iris and even more closely our own native Sisyrinchium. The genus has a split distribution, occurring only in Australia and Central and northern South America. The common name derives from the fact that flowers often last only one day, or even just the first half or part of one day. Valued mostly for their usually very clear, ethereal blue flowers, ranging from palest Wedgewood through deep sky blue. A few species can produce white flowers as well. Iridaceae. rev 1/2018

laxus   MORNING IRIS  (not currently in production)      at White Gums Nursery, Australia   a clumping, dark green, grass-like evergreen perennial rhizome to about 16" tall. Small, starry, light, perfect sky blue flowers to about 1" across are set on thin, wiry stalks that rise above the foliage. Flowers only last one day, but are continuously produced for about one month in early spring. Growth habit is compact and upright, and foliage has a slightly grey cast. Naturalized plants here at our nursery would go completely deciduous late in our long, very dry California summers but would reappear following the first fall/winter rains. If old foliage starts looking rough, cut it back to ground level late summer through mid winter. Full to part sun with good drainage, little summer watering. Very good in containers. Can take frost to around 20°F, going deciduous then as well. USDA zone 9. Western Australia. rev 1/2018

chimboracensis  this is best combination of easy to grow, good flower to foliage ratio and long bloom season. Flowers are light to medium clear blue, about 1 1/4" across with tiny yellow anthers, on burgundy spikes to about knee high. Thin, erect but relaxed light green foliage reaches about mid-calf. Bloom can occur at almost any time, apparently needing only a small amount of mature new foliage and some small amount of chill with daylight. Sun to half shade, average to little summer watering when established, average drainage requirements. Central America, northern South America. USDA zone 9. rev 1/2018

multiflorus   MORNING FLAG (not currently in production)    wonderful flowers   blooming at Strybing Arboretum   effective foliage, commercial situation   a thicker, taller, grassier species with lighter blue flowers but a longer display. More adaptable than O. laxus, and presents a rather neat mass of relaxed dark green foliage, but a little coarser in appearance and in a more commonly seen shade of blue. Australia. USDA zone 9. rev 1/2018

Oscularia deltoides  (not currently in production)  Huntington   why you grow it   another why you grow it   mission-capable performance   possibly my favorite succulent. I love the powdery jade blue foliage, the purplish stems, the odd leaf shape, the tiny teeth, the wonderfully complimentary flower color and spectacular peak bloom, the ease of culture, and I will think of more later. I had a wonderful cascading "bonsai" of this for a long time, grown in a very tall and very narrow urn-like pot. I recommend it for everything from very tiny to very large containers. It fills in for more naked plants in combos and can be used as a large scale groundcover in areas where frosts don't get to 25F more than every few years. About all it won't do is tolerate foot traffic. Sun to mostly shade, watering you should know what to do, likes at least average drainage. Sunset zones 9, 15-17, 21-24/USDA zone 9. South Africa. rev 8/2020

Osmanthus fragrans   SWEET OLIVE (not currently in production)     closeup of new foliage & flowers   habit   another plant   narrow to somewhat spreading evergreen shrub of slow to moderate growth to 15’ tall and wide. Smooth dark green leaves to 2" wide, 4" long are finely toothed. Tiny cream colored flowers appear intermittently, with heaviest production in late summer. Fragrance is light but intense, like Freesia, Boronia, or Citrus, but like the first two it can't be smelled much at all after one or two sniffs and it is completely undetectable by perhaps a quarter to a third of the population. The natural calling for this plant is to be used next to a doorway or path, where the scent often causes people to turn and notice the garden. Usually they will assign the source of the fragrance to another plant with much showier blossoms. For another great favorite with similar function, see Michelia figo. Sun to mostly shade, tolerates poor drainage and clay soil. Needs average to little summer watering when established. Sunset zones 5-9, 12-24, USDA zone 8. Japan. Oleaceae. rev 8/2020

Osmunda regalis v. spectabilis (southern population)   ROYAL FERN  (not currently in production)     at UC Berkeley Botanic Garden   a very hardy, completely deciduous woodland fern to about 6' tall, with arching, coarsely divided fronds that have a very elegant appearance. It likes rich, rather moist soil and will even take some standing water as long as it isn't sour. It is at its best in woodsy gardens or in containers that are kept very wet and shady. It needs at least some winter chill and is rated by Sunset for zones 1-9, 14-17. In spite of this, it lives happily at UC Berkeley in their Asian shade garden on a frost-drained slope. We offer a line derived from the Southern populations, which is much better adapted to our milder winters. rev 8/2020 

Osteospermum  (not currently in production)   OSTEOS, WINTER DAISIES, FREEWAY DAISIES     tough, drought tolerant, showy, improved. Just don't get 'em too cold, or too wet. Compositae/Asteraceae. rev 8/2020

    3D series:    Doubleberry White   Double Pink    Double Purple  Double Silver  |     Voltage Yellow

    Flower Power series  Flower Power Compact Bronze   Flower Power Compact White   

    Serenity series:    Bronze   Dark Purple   Deep Yellow   Honey Gold    Lemonade   Peach Magic   Pink Magic   Sunset Magic    White

The amazing new hybrids, coming from what was previously a common, relatively rough, large scale landscape staple, have been recently (relatively!) adapted for smaller scale, more traditional container and small scale spot landscape color application. The range of colors and shapes is now quite broad, and they can put on a stunning show. The interesting thing is I had assumed they would be typically soft, spineless "greenhouse queens," i.e. hybridized selected strictly for compactness and flower shape/color, and that they had lost their tough landscape core values along the way. But Lynn Jackson, a fine and talented local landscape designer and installer, reports that even these new hybrids are on his very short list of plants that can be established in his own new-concept "waterless" gardens, where he installs landscapes without traditional irrigation systems to avoid most of the cost of the installations. He reports even these new hybrid lines can go in with fall plantings and survive at least the cooler coastal conditions with zero applied water the following summer. For all purposes they think they are succulents. Of course all landscapes in inland areas will need summer watering, but perhaps a single monthly or bimonthly watering into a nicely formed watering basin will suffice, something most homeowners and even commercial installations can manage. And remember some years even those cool coastal areas are essentially rainless March through October, or even most of November (like 2008-10 in our area). Therefore they make it back onto my list of plants to be respected as hardscape subjects as well as for short day color. In addition, this same huge tolerance for very low soil moisture levels makes them outstanding container subjects for permanent plantings in tough or hard to water areas as well as normal and easy to water areas. Just remember that they initiate flowers under short days (after about Oct. 1), and after some mild cool temperature, so be prepared to cut back, feed, and perhaps prime with some additional fall watering to really prepare them for their best winter-early summer flowering performance. For all practical purposes this genus is gopher-resistant. They avoid eating the roots off, never consume the tops and even if cut off from below they have evolved to tolerate and even be propagated and distributed by elephants, just like many other South African succulents, perenials and shrubs such as Pelargonium, Portulacaria, Myrsine, Crassula, Senecio etc. They can exist for months as stems laying on top of the ground wherever they were trampled and thrown about, defoliating if necessary but remaining alive, until revived by and rooting in after fall/winter rains. rev 8/2020        

Otatea  a small genus of New World bamboos, two to five species recognized, none very common. They range over a wide area of Mexico and Guatemala. Graminae/Poaceae. rev 11/2019

aztecorum   OTATE, MEXICAN WEEPING BAMBOO   foliage    nice plant    at the Huntington    at Berghuis Nursery, Lindcove   one of the most desirable and highly sought after bamboos, this clumping variety bears very narrow, dense, lush, bright green leaves massed on arching stems. To 10’ tall, spreading outward very slowly by short underground runners. Foliage on mature, well-grown specimens looks like cheerleader’s pom pons on a skewer. Culms turn blackish in their second year. A very graceful, unusual and striking specimen or focal-point subject, it can look good in full sun in warm, humid situations, but also sparse and unkempt in dry, hot locations unless watered at least intermittently. Its happy place is probably found in partly shaded planting sites, with rich soils and some source of dry-season moisture. Survived 20°F, with damaged culms. Also classified as A. acuminata ssp. aztecorum, and first sold here in the US as Yushania aztecorum. Find more info on bamboo in general here. As of fall 2019 we have noticed three 5g plants forming flower heads, but we've had false alarms before. Mexico. rev 11/2019

glauca  MAYAN SILVER BAMBOO  silvery white stems   banded pattern   greenhouse plants  a wonderful, lush, dense clumping species from Central America that bears fine, deep green foliage on stems to 15', weeping and spreading from the center. The culms emerge a stunning silvery white and age to banded white and burgundy, then to all tan or deep burgundy colors on the oldest stems. This is one seriously pretty plant, a stiffer, larger version of its sister, Mexican Weeping Bamboo. The culms reach 1 1/2" across by 20' tall (under the best conditions) and it is a fast grower. The foliage is dimorphic,with large leaflets to almost an inch across by 6-7" long clasping the emerging stem and dense tufts of much finer, smaller mature leaves being borne by the small twigs. The sheath is prominent and retained for about a year. The overall texture is much larger, more robust and more substantial than A. aztecorum, and the leaf color is much darker. This species grows best with rich, moist soils (of course) but will do fine with average conditions and has quite a bit more vigor than its lower, slower, more shade loving brother. The American Bamboo Society reports this species is hardy to 22F and I have found their hardiness figures to be accurate and reliable. This is yet another outstanding plant from the Chiapas region of Mexico. Sunset zones 8-9, 14-24/USDA zone 9. rev 11/2019

Othonna   over 100 species of southern African succulents and shrubs, evergreen and deciduous, found mostly in the Western Cape Region of South Africa. Mostly winter (wet season) growers, mostly yellow flowers. Highly diverse for habit, habitat and lifestyles. Compositae/Asteraceae. rev 5/2020

capensis  LITTLE PICKLES  what it does    a creeping succulent, most horticultural forms growing with dense habits. Small bright yellow flowers to about 1/2" across make a nice show in spring dancing above the tightly mounding grey green foliage. Winter/wet season growers,  to about 8-12" across by a few inches high, flower stalks taller. Full sun, good drainage, dry in summer especially along the coast or in cooler areas. Hardy to USDA zone 8? Zone 7 or lower? Drakensberg Region, South Africa. rev 5/2020
'Ruby Necklace'  leaves and flowers  a little looser, more trailing, very good hanging from your special pot or a hanging basket. Reddish tinged leaves, typical small yellow flowers. rev 5/2020

Oxalis magellanica 'Nelson' (not currently in production)  leaves   a miniature Oxalis, under 1" tall, with tiny little leaves to about 1/4" long, and very large, double white flowers. The critical feature is that it runs along the surface but doesn't produce weedy bulblets, so it isn't invasive. It is a dense, clean miniature, and its petite size makes it good for a groundcover in containers, bonsai, between pavers, in garden railroads, rock walls, walkways, etc. It is also very nice in a very small pot, on its own. Bright shade, in fact at least half shade, with regular watering, is best, but the most critical point is it doesn't like continued heat, being a circumpolar plant of the Southern Hemisphere. Sterile. Charles Darwin collected a specimen of this, in Patagonia. Sunset zones 1-6, 14-17, 22, 24/USDA 5. rev 10/2010

Allure Series (not currently in production)     all three    nice little mound of colored shamrock leaves. 'Allure Ebony' is black, 'Allure Mahogany' is brownish pink, and 'Allure Silver' is light green. Flowers of pink or white peek through the leaves all summer into fall. Wonderful mixer for combination pots with flowers or foliage about 12" tall and wide. Part shade to full shade inland with average watering. Sunset zones 8, 9, 14-24/USDA 8. rev 4/2013-Suzy Brooks 

'Plum Crazy' (not currently in production)    flowers and leaves  don't let the Oxalis reputation scare you away from this one! Bronze, pink, and cream all mixed up in shamrock leaves festooned with yellow flowers. It's a party in a pot! A small charmer under 6" tall and spreading only to 12", just right for containers. Give it part shade or just bright light to keep the colors rich. Regular watering. Protect from cold outside Sunset zones 8, 9, 12-24/USDA 8. rev 4/2012-Suzy Brooks 

tetraphylla 'Iron Cross'    lucky!  here's your lucky four leaf clover! Easy, with pretty flowers and big, dark centers in the leaflets. Forms a clump, bigger and better each year, reaching about 8-10" tall. If your soil is soggy in winter grow in a pot, or lift the little tubers and replant in spring. Sun or part shade, average watering. USDA zone 8/Sunet zones 7-9, 12-24.-Suzy Brooks. rev 8/2018

tuberosa  (not currently in production)     OCA, UQA, NEW ZEALAND YAM   eaters    starters    eats shoots and leaves    yet another of the fabulous "lost crops of the Incas," except it was never really misplaced - it just didn't get traction as quickly as it could have. Young leaves and shoots can be eaten as a green vegetable, and the tubers, which form under short days, can be eaten either fresh or as cooked, starchy vegetable. Nutritional value is very high, including vitamins, caretenoids, anthocyanins and very high carbohydrate content. Plants multiply like rabbits, and yields can be up to 20 tons per acre. Prefers relatively cool-summer conditions, easily tolerates poor soils and cold winters. USDA zone 6-9/Sunset zones 4-24. rev 4/2016

vulcanicola 'Sunset Velvet' (not currently in production)      orange, green and yellow   an orange plant! With yellow flowers! Irresistible! Too cute, sporting little clover leaves in shades of orange, lime green, and pink and not a bit invasive. This wonderment is a joy where ever it goes, in hanging baskets, combination plantings, with black mondo grass and  pink Echeverias, sun or part shade, average watering. About 6-8" tall, 12" wide.  Sunset zones 16-24/USDA 9. rev 4/2013-Suzy Brooks 

Ozothamnus  a group of shrubby or more soft-wooded perennials with aromatic, needle-like foliage. Most are used for foliage feature because flowers are quite small, but the budded stems can be quite showy in a few species. Australia, New Zealand. Compositae/Asteraceae. rev 6/2010

coralloides (not currently in production)  captivating stems  "one of the most remarkable plants in New Zealand" wrote H.H. Allan in his 1961 Flora of New Zealand. Forms a low, rounded mass of amazing, cord-like stems, each one a slightly chunky cylinder of compressed, almost bead-like, dark blue-green leaves surrounded by a halo of silvery white fuzz.. This almost-alpine is an easy grower for us, and probably for anyone else in a cool, coastal or semi-montane climate. Likes a free root run with deep, intermittent watering in full sun, less exposure in hotter climates. About a foot by a foot, small flowers are creamy yellow, held against the stems, and haven't appeared for us so far. USDA zone 7/Sunset zones 5-7, 14-17. rev 8/2016

'County Park Silver'    1g can    very tight, very low, very grey white, no obvious pests, no obvious flowers. A very cool foliage/texture plant, you just have to pet it. About 1" tall by 12" (?) across I think. Likes grainy mineral garden soils or container potting mixes that aren't too organic, with intermittent summer watering in the ground when established. Full, unobstructed sun, probably will need some shade in Central Valley-esque climates though. Seems to tolerate high-rainfall winters just fine. I can't find any definitive info on its origin except for one Slovak reference that says it is a European nursery hybrid between the New Zealand native Ozothamnus depressum (syn. Helichrysum d.) with Helichrysum italicum ssp. microphyllum
. Best I can do for now. Got this from Xera Plants in Portland so we know it's hardy to at least USDA zone 8. rev 1/2018

diosmifolius 'Pink'   PINK RICE FLOWER   popcorn flowers   habit, nice 5g specimens     an upright grower, to about 4-6' tall, with mostly vertical stems of dark green needle-like leaves. Small clusters of dark pink buds open to little round white flowers and make a nice flower show in early summer.. Very nice in bouquets for the summer table. USDA zone 9/Sunset 8, 9, 14-24. rev 4/2021

ledifolius  (not currently in production)  KEROSENE PLANT (not currently in production)   young plants   grown for its extremely fine, chartreuse to golden needle-like foliage and regular habit. It gets its name from the sticky, flammable, aromatic leaves. The flowers appear in the summer, when the heat releases a sweet honey fragrance. Compact, dense,  rounded shape, about 3' tall and wide. Choice. Sunset zones 7-9, 14-24 USDA zone 8. rev 6/2010

note: all above text and images ©Luen Miller and Monterey Bay Nursery, Inc. except as otherwise noted