Ceanothus arboreus Greene
Feltleaf, Feltleaf ceanothus, Island ceanothus, Island mountain lilac
Rhamnaceae (Buckthorn Family)
Synonym(s): Ceanothus arboreus var. glabra
USDA Symbol: cear
A tall, tree-like shrub, 12-28 ft. high and 10 ft. wide. Bark is smooth and gray and broadly oval leaves are large, glossy and dark green. Flowers are light blue and occur in clusters up to 5 in. long. Evergreen large shrub or small tree with short, straight trunk, rounded crown of many stout, spreading branches, and abundant, pale blue flowers.
This distinctive species grows wild only on three California islands. It is planted along the coast as an ornamental and a screen and along roadsides. One of the largest species of its genus, it bears a suitable species name meaning treelike.
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Bloom InformationBloom Color: Blue
Bloom Time: Feb , Mar , Apr , May
Native Distribution: Santa Cruz, Santa Rosa, Santa Catalina Islands
Native Habitat: Brushy slopes
Growing ConditionsLight Requirement: Sun
Soil Description: Various well-drained, dry soils.
Conditions Comments: Grows 5-10 ft./year and is a fast filler.
Value to Beneficial InsectsSpecial Value to Native Bees
Supports Conservation Biological Control
This information was provided by the Pollinator Program at The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation.
PropagationDescription: Most Ceanothus spp. come well from seed. Cuttings of this species may also be successful.
Seed Collection: Because dry capsules disperse their seed abruptly with a sudden ejection, it may be necessary to tie cloth bags around the clusters of capsules to catch the seeds.
Seed Treatment: A hot water treatment may be beneficial. (Bring water to a boil and then steep the seeds for 10-15 minutes.)
Commercially Avail: yes
From the National Organizations DirectoryAccording to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:
Santa Barbara Botanic Garden - Santa Barbara, CA
Recommended Species Lists
Find native plant species by state. Each list contains commercially available species suitable for gardens and planned landscapes. Once you have selected a collection, you can browse the collection or search within it using the combination search.View Recommended Species page
Additional resourcesUSDA: Find Ceanothus arboreus in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Ceanothus arboreus in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Ceanothus arboreus
MetadataRecord Modified: 2007-01-01
Research By: TWC Staff