Planting zone: 8 to 11
Size: 6 to 12 feet high and wide.
Bloom season: Most of the year in low-frost areas.
Exposure: Full sun, part sun.
Pruning needs: Grows moderately; prune to keep compact.
Water needs: Drought-tolerant. Low water needed once established.
Snapshot: This hardy shrub requires very little care, but is an asset to any garden. With striking blue flowers and bright green leaves, this plant always looks presentable because it sheds itself naturally, or self-cleans. It’s not a favorite edible among deer, but its graceful, cheerful appearance is attractive to butterflies. Plumbago is a larval host plant to the blue butterfly (Leptotes plinius). This plant may die back with heavy frost, but recovers quickly. The flexible woody branches are easily trained to cover a trellis or grow up a wall. Pruning encourages flowering. Tough and resilient, plumbago is a good candidate in hard-to-grow areas such as urban settings, rock gardens and containers. It is available in most nurseries.
Got a gardening question?
In San Luis Obispo, call 805-781-5939; Arroyo Grande, 805-473-7190, and Templeton, 805-434-4105. Visit us at http://ucanr.org/sites/mgslo/ or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow us on Instagram at slo_mgs and like us on Facebook. Informative garden workshops are held the third Saturday of every month, 10 a.m. to noon at 2156 Sierra Way in San Luis Obispo. Garden docents are available after the workshop until 1 p.m. To request a tour of the garden, call 805-781-5939.