Hardiness: 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) USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 °C (10 °F) USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 °C (15 °F) USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 °C (20 °F) USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 °C (25 °F)
Sun Exposure: Full Sun
Danger: Pollen may cause allergic reaction
Bloom Color: Bright Yellow
Bloom Time: Mid Spring
Foliage: Grown for foliage Evergreen Silver/Gray Aromatic
Other details: Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater
Soil pH requirements: 6.6 to 7.5 (neutral) 7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline) 7.9 to 8.5 (alkaline) 8.6 to 9.0 (strongly alkaline)
Patent Information: Non-patented
Propagation Methods: From herbaceous stem cuttings By simple layering
Seed Collecting: Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds
I have a plant that is about 24 inches tall, but with leaves very similar to this plant in your photo. They are grey-green and slightly fuzzy. The blooms are like a buttercup only they are orange in color. The stems are green, but rather "woody" and stiff. It is about 4 ft in circumference. I would like to know if you can tell me the "variety" that mine could be. No one seems to know, not even the greenhouse owner who grows TX plants. Please help.
Planted in October 2009 from a 3" pot on the east side of a stone wall. Grew slowly into a 6" ball and then, starting in July 2010, for two years, it was totally ignored and not watered. It liked that, and is roughly a foot wide and tall, and bloomed this year (2012).
Despite the afternoon shade, it's not leggy, and it responded vigorously when watering began again in May.
Climate zone: Sunset 11, USDA 8b (the Owens Valley, east of the Sierra Nevada, California), well drained fine sandy soil near the toe of an alluvial fan.
Will propagate from cutting and seed and will post results.
On Jun 10, 2012, ProfGillespie from Seminole, OK wrote:
This is the strangest plant. I heard in Oklahoma lavender doesn't grow. I planted one anyway.I've had it for about 5 years and the 2nd and 3rd year I harvested purple fragrant lavender buds and made lavender oil with the stalks and leaves. Then for the last 2 years, no purple shoots. Yellow round flowers appear, not smelling like lavender at all. What happened? I did trim it 3 years ago. I thought maybe I hurt it since I get no lavender fragrance from the leaves either. I'd love feedback. I found its ID as lavender cotton after much research.
On Jul 12, 2011, PerennialConnection from Albion, MI (Zone 6a) wrote:
I live in Jackson, Michigan (USA). My area is USDA zone 5 (it depends on who you ask wether it is 5A or 5B). I believe that I have an unusual micro-climate in my location. The houses are less than 20 feet in any direction; the snow cover is easily 2+ feet thick through January and February at all times. Conversely, when the weather begins to break my back yard does not receive hard frost. Santolina is doing VERY well. No die-back, I never water, and the soil ranges from rocky (some previous owners driveway base) to sandy loam. I am eager to try these in a formal arrangement on my north facing lawn. It is much shadier there, but live and learn.
On Mar 30, 2009, blackcanyon from Hotchkiss, CO wrote:
Here in western CO (zone 5 or colder), it isn't evergreen. Usually dies back completely. I trim it each spring, mulch in winter. And I agree with all those who said this plant likes very well drained soil. A very attractive xeric plant.
On Mar 30, 2009, cfreid from Port Townsend, WA wrote:
I've been using grey santolina for years. First in Portland, OR and now in Tucson,AZ,climates that couldn't be more different. In Portland I had to
clip it to the ground every spring and grow it on a south facing bank
with minimal water. Here in Tucson it's on the north side of the house
and gets minimal sun but lots of reflected light and is surround by
hardscape. Best of all the bunnies hate it!
On May 26, 2008, lgtnin from Hallsville, TX (Zone 8b) wrote:
When purchased, this plant had a tag in it saying it was a licorice plant. It took it two full years in the ground before it began blooming. I had come to the conclusion that it was a silver wormwood when all of a sudden we have yellow flowers. It keeps the pests away like a wormwood. I cut it all back to about six or eight inches in winter. It is a beautiful shade of gray and looks lovely between two of my purple coneflowers. It seems to like water but doesn't complain when it doesn't get any for a week or so. I would very definitely plant more of these. Just need a bigger yard.
On May 19, 2005, hanna1 from Castro Valley, CA (Zone 9a) wrote:
Blooms August-September. Likes full sun. Soil should be average, well drained. Does not do well with wet feet. Leaves can be used in flavoring sauces, dried in Pot-pourri, oil is used in perfumes. It is a medicinal herb. Is also used to moth proof linens and wools. Seeds sown Spring & Fall in cold frame.
On Apr 4, 2004, docaly from Albuquerque, NM wrote:
Seems grey santolina (S. chamacyparissus) is the most drought-tolerant of all the santolinas. I used it in central NM and found it thrives and prefers lots of sun and very little watering. As a matter of fact, I lost a couple of them by overwatering. It does appreciate mixed soil with good drainage.
This is a beautiful plant which provides a nice backdrop in the informal garden with its mounding habit and pretty yellow buttons on spikes! Great smell, too! Used against river rock and other hardscape, is striking!
Am looking for an appropriate santolina for central FL (zone 9); perhaps s. incana; where it can tolerate higher humidity, yet still looks good in a xeri garden.
On Feb 19, 2004, careyjane from Rabat Morocco wrote:
Santolina is also useful in "mosaiculture" and contrasts well with the coppery foliage of Alternanthera.
I have also used it successfully in mass plantings.
The smell of its foliage on a hot summer's day when it is being watered is heavenly.
On Jul 6, 2003, patp from Summerville, SC (Zone 8a) wrote:
Not many plants are happy living in a concrete pot on a concrete driveway next to a brick wall between two steel garage doors during 90-100+ degrees fahrenheit summers and frequent dry spells. It tolerates neglect in the winter, plus the silvery color contrasts nicely with an equally forgiving purslane plant that re-seeds in the spring. Scrawny plant was purchased at a local garden center in July 2001.
I've had terrific success with this plant in several gardens on our property. It thrives by the fish pond receiving full sun and plenty of moisture. It is smothered with small, very attractive, bright yellow "ball" flowers. It receives periodic trimmings: early spring, after flowering, late summer. This seems to keep it in a nice, rounded shape preventing it from "splitting" down the middle. The foliage is light & feathery, with silvery tones. This has been a great landscaping choice!
This plant takes a licking and keeps ticking in North Texas, but NOT in full sun. In Texas, we grow this wonderful plant in part to full shade, AND it likes lots of water! It is beautiful from the end of March through Easter and the honey bees just love it! So, I would advise to grow it near something that needs pollinating!
On Nov 23, 2002, jkom51 from Oakland, CA (Zone 9b) wrote:
A nice plant, but it is VERY xeric (drought-tolerant) and too much water or rich soil will make the plant start to flop right down the middle as it grows. Since it tends to grow in a perfect circle this is very unattractive when it happens. Because it forms such a symmetrical shape I found it hard to work into the very casual, mixed-bed look I prefer. I've pruned the edges and the center is trying to fill in, but I'm still not very happy with how it looks.
On Aug 10, 2001, Lilith from Durham United Kingdom (Zone 8a) wrote:
This evergreen shrub has fragrant, narrow, and crinkled silvery-grey leaves on mound-shaped plants about two feet high. Soft gray leaves give it its name, cotton lavender, also known as gray santolina. Keep the leaves clipped for formal knot gardens or edging, or let the yellow flowers emerge for extra color in an informal garden.
Like all gray herbs, santolina needs full sun and soil with excellent drainage. In spring, when the new growth emerges, cut off the barren stems and cut back healthy stems a little to encourage bushy new growth. In cold climates, give some extra protection with a mulch.
This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:
Lewes, Phoenix, Arizona Saint David, Arizona Bay Point, California Cartago, California Castro Valley, California Knights Landing, California Martinez, California North Fork, California Rancho Santa Margarita, California San Leandro, California Valley Center, California Colorado Springs, Colorado Hotchkiss, Colorado East Haven, Connecticut North Star, Delaware Black Diamond, Florida Valparaiso, Florida Marietta, Georgia Champaign, Illinois Washington, Illinois Lansing, Kansas Lambertville, Michigan Pahrump, Nevada Rochester, New Hampshire Las Cruces, New Mexico East Kingston, New York Fairport, New York Elizabeth City, North Carolina Ruth, North Carolina Montrose-ghent, Ohio Oklahoma City, Oklahoma Seminole, Oklahoma Albany, Oregon Gold Hill, Oregon Conway, South Carolina Kiawah Island, South Carolina Summerville, South Carolina Alice, Texas Austin, Texas Blanco, Texas Bulverde, Texas Carrollton, Texas Eagle Mountain, Texas Hallsville, Texas Hereford, Texas Kerrville, Texas La Vernia, Texas Lake Brownwood, Texas (2 reports) Midland, Texas Pampa, Texas San Antonio, Texas (2 reports) Lake Monticello, Virginia Lexington, Virginia Bay Center, Washington Concrete, Washington