Genus: California lilac

Ceanothus

Photo/Illustration: 
Neil Diboll
California lilac (Ceanothus)
see-ah-NO-thuss
Rhamnaceae
The genus Ceanothus is comprised of deciduous and evergreen shrubs, mostly from western North America, and also from the eastern U.S. and Mexico, in a wide distribution from the coast to the mountains, usually in scrub and woodland on dry slopes. They are grown for their small but abundant, blue, white, or pink flowers. Some of the species are suitable for shrub borders or against a sunny wall. Low-growing or prostrate species work well as a groundcover or in rock gardens. May be trained against a wall, where they may reach twice the size they would in an open site. Relatively lime tolerant. Expect a lifespan of 5 to 10 years.
Care:  Grow in fertile, well-drained soil in full sun, sheltered from strong, cold winds.
Propagation: 

Root greenwood cuttings of deciduous plants, and semi-ripe cuttings of evergreens, in mid- or late summer.

Species, varieties and clutivars for genus Ceanothus

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Mountain sweet
Ceanothus americanus
Problems: 

Common: dieback, powdery mildew, mushroom root rot, fungal leaf spots, and Verticillium wilt. Caterpillars, scale insects, lacebugs, and mealybugs occur.