California Fuchsia (Epilobium canum) Adds Fall Color to High Desert Gardens

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I took a lot of chances on planting California native plants slightly out of their natural range.  Most of them didn’t make it. One of the successes, among my favorites, was California fuchsia (Epilobium canun).

I planted mine where the foundation of my home, sidewalks, driveway and road function somewhat like rock outcrops.  Large blocks of cement help protect soil moisture from evaporation during summer months.  My California fuchsias got watered once a month during the summer in most, but not all locations.  For desert gardeners, I recommend either planting adjacent to hardscape  (cement, asphalt, tile, pavers, etc.) or using heavy rock mulch.  Addition of organic matter to soil is a good idea, but may not be necessary.

In addition to providing fall color in unirrigated or lightly irrigated areas of my yard, California fuchsia or Hummingbird trumpet, attracts humming birds and bees to the flower bed just outside my living room windows.  Makes for great bird watching and cat entertaining.  Now that I know California fuschsia will perform well in High Desert gardens, I hope to get more of them. Hmm…. should really pop next to rabbit bush which turns vibrant golden yellow in the fall.

Additional Information

California Fuchsia | Epilobium canum. California Native Plant Society. Accessed November 11, 2016.


About Caliche Chick

I retired from a career as an Environmental Scientist and Botanist. My first career was teaching science and English as a Second Language (ESL), and content classes for ESL students at the middle school level. I also taught introductory biology at the community college level. I have an avid interest in plants that grow with little to no irrigation. I also keep a vegetable garden, fruit trees, and back yard chickens. When I am not in my yard, I am taking Construction Technology Classes at Victor Valley College and working on my "fixer upper" home.
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2 Responses to California Fuchsia (Epilobium canum) Adds Fall Color to High Desert Gardens

  1. I assumed Zauschneria / Epilobium canum was better for even a little higher than your area, such as where I designed and gardened for 21+ years…Albuquerque at 5000’+. I went to Tucson, and it absolutely thrives there, 2500′ and in the hot Sonoran Desert. Then, I saw the gray leafed variety common in the SF east bay (Walnut Creek)…I wish I could get that one…

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