Monday Melange: Tree Anemone
Written by Heleigh Bostwick    Monday, 27 February 2017
Tree anemone

Tree or bush anemone (Carpenteria californica) is an evergreen shrub native to California, in particular, the foothills of the western Sierra Nevada Mountains. It is the only species in the genus Carpenteria, and like the mock orange, is a member of the Hydrangea plant family (Hydrangeaceae) family. In cultivation since 1865, it is more commonly used in English gardens.

Tree anemone is a rare and beautiful plant whose main attraction is the lovely fragrant, white, anemone-shaped flowers, which bloom in June and July and are 2 to 3 inches in diameter. It also has attractive mottled bark. The fruits are leathery capsules. It is drought tolerant but should be watered if rainfall is less than 20 inches per year. Use as a specimen plant or in a hedge.

The dome-shaped tree anemone grows to a height of 6 to 8 feet tall by 4 to 5 feet wide in the garden and probably a few feet taller in the wild, where it grows at elevations of 340-1340 meters, along seasonal streams primarily in the foothills of Fresno and Madera Counties. It is part of the chapparal and is well adapted to the wildfires typical of that ecosystem, regenerating by stumps sprouts as opposed to seedlings. Tree anemone is listed as threatened in California.

Photo source: www.greencombe.org.uk