California Flannelbush (Fremontodendron californicum)

I didn’t know much about this plant and flower until I saw it yesterday at the Southern California Spring Garden Show 2014. My friend, Keri, from, is much more knowledgable about native plants than I am, so she was able to offer some more information. I would love to plant more natives in my garden, but they can be a bit fussy and don’t stand up well to my benign neglect method of gardening. (LAUGH) Still, this plant is going on my list of possibilities to try at some time in the future.

California flannelbush

California Flannelbush (Fremontodendron californicum)

Fremontodendron californicum, the California flannelbush, with syn. Fremontia californica Torr.) is a flowering evergreen minor hardwood tree/shrub, with fuzzy, flannel-like leaves and colorful blossoms. It bears the alternate common names California fremontia and flannel flower. It is one of two species in the genus Fremontodendron (the other beingF. mexicanum), and it is divided into four subspecies.

Fremontodendron californicum is found in some mountainous spots in California, especially along the eastern San Joaquin Valley[1] in the western foothills of the Sierra Nevada, where it thrives in chalky, sandy, nutritionally poor soils; it is also found on the east slope Cascade Range foothills of the northwest San Joaquin Valley.[2] It is also found in small, isolated populations in the mountains of central and western Arizona‘s transition zoneMogollon Rim region, primarily in the Mazatzal and Superstition Mountains[1] [2].— Wikipedia

More information on California Flannelbush (Fremontodendron californicum)

Many California chaparral natives have a distinctly rugged appearance, having evolved to the dry, rocky terrain constituting much of the Golden State. The spectacular golden flowers of California flannel bush (Fremontodendron californicum) evoke a fertile chaparral community while requiring almost no water, putting this plant among California’s most prized native beauties. It’s admired as far away as Europe, where you’ll even see flannel bush planted at Kew Gardens and in front of London’s St. Paul’s Cathedral.
Previously in Garden Alphabet: