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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Thursday - September 24, 2009

From: Norco, CA
Region: California
Topic: Diseases and Disorders
Title: Plants resistant to Verticillium wilt in Norco CA
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I'm looking for small trees, flowering shrubs & vines that are resistant to verticillium wilt. Fragrance would be a plus. Thank you so much!

ANSWER:

Please read this article on Verticillium wilt from the University of Illinois. An excerpt from that article:

"Verticillium wilt is caused by the fungi Verticillium albo-atrum and Verticillium dahliae. These fungi live in the soil and attack plants whose roots are stressed. These fungi may attack more than three hundred woody and herbaceous plant species. Plant susceptibility or resistance may vary from one region to another since the virulence found in the different strains of Verticillium sp. is usually different as well as the genetic resistance of the plant. Cultural practices and environmental conditions can influence the infection of susceptible plants with this disease." We found one website from the University of Arizona Cooperative Extension on Verticillium Wilt that actually says: "Native species of trees and shrubs are not affected, and monocots such as grasses, palms and yuccas are immune." Verticillium wilt is considered a cool season fungus because fungus grows only at soil temperatures between 70 and 85 deg. F.

The emphasis is ours. California, because it has such ideal growing conditons, has become the Land of the Non-Native Plant. At the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, we are committed to the use, care and propagation of plants native not only to North America, but to the area in which they are being grown. A non-native plant finds itself in an environment where it is not adapted to climate, soil or rainfall, and often becomes stressed. This is not to say that a plant native to an area is immune to verticillium wilt; that isn't true at all. What is true is that a native plant will have a better chance of being healthy enough to resist the damage of the disease. There are plant groups that are known to be resistant to verticillium wilt; our job is to find plants from some of those groups that are native to the area around Riverside County, in far southern California.

We are going to our Recommended Species section, select Southern Caliornia on the map, and search under General Habit for trees, shrubs and vines that are specifically native to your area of Riverside County. You can go back later and search the same way, but selecting for the amount of sun (Light Requirements), Soil Moisture, etc. We can't guarantee fragrance, but we did find some sages, which are usually fragrant, native to your area. Follow the links to the webpage on each individual plant to learn how big it is expected to get, when it blooms and what color, how much sun and moisture it needs and so forth. 

Native Plants for Riverside County, CA

Clematis lasiantha (pipestem clematis)

Lathyrus splendens (pride of California)

Maurandella antirrhiniflora (roving sailor)

Vitis girdiana (desert wild grape)

Artemisia tridentata (big sagebrush)

Comarostaphylis diversifolia (summer holly)

Fremontodendron mexicanum (Mexican flannelbush)

Simmondsia chinensis (jojoba)

Chilopsis linearis (desert willow)

Fraxinus velutina (velvet ash)

Quercus agrifolia (California live oak)

Washingtonia filifera (California fan palm)

Yucca baccata (banana yucca)

Salvia clevelandii (fragrant sage)

Salvia leucophylla (San Luis purple sage)

Salvia pachyphylla (blue sage)

From our Native Plant Image Gallery


Clematis lasiantha

Lathyrus splendens

Maurandella antirrhiniflora

Vitis girdiana

Artemisia tridentata

Comarostaphylis diversifolia

Fremontodendron mexicanum

Simmondsia chinensis

Chilopsis linearis

Fraxinus velutina

Quercus agrifolia

Washingtonia filifera

Yucca baccata

Salvia clevelandii

Salvia leucophylla

Salvia pachyphylla

 

 

 

 

 

 



 

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