Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Mountain Misery
Chamaebatia foliolosa

Family: Rosaceae (ro-ZAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Chamaebatia (kam-ay-BAY-tee-uh) (Info)
Species: foliolosa (foh-lee-oh-LOH-suh) (Info)

Synonym:Chamaebatiaria foliolosa

One member has or wants this plant for trade.


under 6 in. (15 cm)
6-12 in. (15-30 cm)
12-18 in. (30-45 cm)
18-24 in. (45-60 cm)
24-36 in. (60-90 cm)
36-48 in. (90-120 cm)

Unknown - Tell us

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)
USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)
USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)
USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun
Sun to Partial Shade
Light Shade

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:
Pale Yellow
White/Near White

Bloom Time:
Unknown - Tell us


Other details:
Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping
This plant is resistant to deer

Soil pH requirements:
4.5 or below (very acidic)
4.6 to 5.0 (highly acidic)
5.1 to 5.5 (strongly acidic)
5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Patent Information:
Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:
Unknown - Tell us

Seed Collecting:
Unknown - Tell us

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By growin
Thumbnail #1 of Chamaebatia foliolosa by growin

By growin
Thumbnail #2 of Chamaebatia foliolosa by growin


2 positives
1 neutral
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Neutral mrs_colla On Jul 3, 2014, mrs_colla from Marin, CA (Zone 9b) wrote:

My rating is neutral, because I don't grow this plant. We just spent a summer week in Yosemite, and I have been miserable indeed. I find the smell absolutely nauseating, intolerably so...

Positive pkiler On Aug 4, 2008, pkiler from Menifee, CA wrote:

I'd like to find someone refining the resin exudate into an essential oil, for fragrance usage. Does any one know someone doing this? Or maybe someone *willing* to do this, with access to the plant?

Please email me at:


Positive peachespickett On Mar 23, 2007, peachespickett from Huntington, AR wrote:

I'm adding this plant because it is a favorite memory of mine growing up in the California foothills. We called it Mountain Misery, but I believe the Native American word for it is kit-kit-dizze. I know it as a spreading groundcover (stoloniferous maybe) beneath oaks in dry shade, about two feet tall, in zone 7 where we never (that I can recall) dropped below 20F. The foliage is pungent, hard to describe, a little like deerbrush (ceanothus interrigimus) flowers maybe, but dry and kind of musky. The leaves are also sticky and thick, almost gummy, hairy and somewhat fernlike and quite similiar to desert fernbush (chamaebatiaria millefolium) but smaller . If you ever walk through the hills of the Gold Country you'll come across this plant eventually, with interior live, blue,canyon,and black oaks, digger pines, buckbrush, and manzanita.

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