Plant List for a Pacific Coast Redwood Retreat

Plant ideas: Steal this look. Here’s a preliminary plant list I’m working on for a home that’s about to be built in Larkspur. The site is in a Redwood Grove.  Most of these plants are native to California. The new home will have California Craftsman architectural elements so the non-native plants will have an Asian bent. The foliage color scheme is deep green, black and maroon/orange. The flowers are mostly white and maroon-ish.  The mix of textures: lacy architectural and strappy.


Acer circinatum Pacific Fire Vine Maple This is a California native maple that grows under redwoods but it’s a cultivar that has red bark and looks like a sango kaku

Acer d ‘Orangeola’ This is a cool Japanese Maple that’s really slow growing and doesn’t get too big when it does finally grow.


Carpenteria Californica This one is evergreen. It’s a nice shrub with beautiful white flowers that the deer don’t like.

Loropetalum ‘Emerald Snow’ A nice green evergreen – It’s short and no maintenance is needed. It has white flowers

Loropetalum ‘Purple Pixie’ Same here but it’s purple.

Loropetalum rubrum Plum Delight This is a big version of the above

Philadelphus lewisii Wild Mock Orange It likes shade, gets nice and big and is deciduous – I’m putting the Carpenteria Californica  in front of it.

Podocarpus Macrophyllus Japanese Yew Everyone knows this hardworking plant that likes shade that you can chop flat. I use it to hide ugly fences all the time!

Rhododendron brachycarpum ‘Tiger Stedtii’ This one is big and pretty but it’s not native. Deer aren’t supposed to like the big leaf’s so much – we’ll pray for this one

Ribes indecorum White Chaparral Currant This is a California native – it’s pretty – for early spring when nothing else is happening. It’s got beautiful dangling flowers, looks like white jewelry with the bark.

Grass and Grass-like plants

Acorus Ogon This is beautiful green grass that will look nice hanging over the retaining wall at this site.

Black Mando Mondo is black and cool – it will look really good next to the acid green Acorus and Hakonechloa ‘Aureola’

Cannomois grandis – Bell Reed This is very cool – I’ve got some beautiful ones growing at the marina in Sausalito – It’s a nice – looks good with bamboo and my other cool plants.

Hakonechloa ‘Aureola’ Like Acorus but with fatter leaves and it’s a little more yellow. It doesn’t do that well in sun – it gets burnt looking but for this environment, I think it will be perfect.

Phormium Cookianum ‘TriColor’ Nice Phormium with good color interest – and it doesn’t get big – 3 feet is a nice size.

Phormium “Platts Black’ Same size – three feet – and it is dark maroonish black – good for my color scheme

Phyllostachys nigra “Black Bamboo’ What can I say, it’s black and its bamboo


Polystichum Munitum Western Sword Fern I remembered the latin name because it sort-of sounds like – getting stuck with a knife multiple times on a muni-train. Perfect for the Redwood grove – you can’t kill it.


Achillea Millefolium ‘cassis’ The most beautiful weed cultivar – nice color – plus Annie’s has it – Almost anything Annie’s has is cool.

Achillea Millefolium ‘lanulosa’ This is a really pretty white native – Also, they flower forever.

Aquilegia vulgaris William Guinness Columbine Really cool and pretty

Heuchera rubescens glandulos This is native heuchera – the real deal

Iris Douglaisiana “Fancy Pants’ This is from Annie’s too – native and fancy too

Ground Covers

Ajuga reptans ‘Jungle Beauty’ Purple leaf ground cover – It can get kind of frosted. It’s looking funky at the Marina, but does well for a few years.

Arctostaphylos Edmunds ‘Big Sur’ Nice – not overused manzanita – lower growing and pretty – perfect here.

Whipplea modesta trailing Sub Shrub This is pretty and native – it has pretty flowers that will look nice hanging over the retaining wall.

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