Lonicera hispidula (Lindl.) Douglas ex Torr. & A. Gray
Pink honeysuckle, Hairy Honeysuckle, California honeysuckle, Western honeysuckle, Pink chaparral honeysuckle
Caprifoliaceae (Honeysuckle Family)
USDA Symbol: lohi2
Native to open woods and shrublands from southwest British Columbia to southwest California, Lonicera hispidula is a member of the honeysuckle family (family Caprifoliaceae), which includes mainly shrubs, sometimes vines or herbs, commonly with showy flowers. This species is one of those peculiar twining shrubs sometimes encountered in genus Lonicera. It usually grows as a loose shrub unless its branches come in contact with something it can twine onto, like a neighboring plant or a fence; then the branches will twine up and out while the center of the plant remains a somewhat stout shrub. Some individuals, though, are more generally vine-like and will trail along the ground with little or no shrubbiness, while others will be more consistently shrubby and will hardly twine at all. Lonicera hispidula is deciduous to semi-evergreen and ranges from 3 to 20 feet high, the greatest heights reached by twining. Attractive pink, rose, or purple flowers appear in spring and summer and decorative red berries in fall.
The genus, Lonicera, is named for Adam Lonicer (1528 - 1586), a German botanist noted for his 1557 revised version of Eucharius Rösslin’s herbal. He became professor of Mathematics in 1553 and Doctor of Medicine in 1554, becoming the town physician in Frankfurt-am-Main. His true interest though was herbs and the study of botany.
From the Image Gallery
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial
Habit: Shrub , Vine
Leaf Retention: Deciduous , Semi-evergreen
Leaf Arrangement: Opposite
Leaf Complexity: Simple
Leaf Shape: Obovate , Ovate
Leaf Venation: Pinnate
Leaf Pubescence: Puberulent
Leaf Margin: Entire
Leaf Apex: Obtuse
Leaf Base: Cordate , Truncate
Breeding System: Flowers Unisexual , Monoecious
Size Notes: 5-20 ft
Leaf: Green occasionally tinged with red
Flower: Flowers 12-16 mm long
Fruit: Red 8 mm
Size Class: 6-12 ft. , 12-36 ft.
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Pink
Bloom Time: May , Jun
Bloom Notes: Though usually pink, blooms can also be muted to a white, darkened to rose or purple, or tinged with yellow.
DistributionUSA: CA , OR , WA
Native Distribution: Extreme southwestern British Columbia (mainly Vancouver Island and nearby isles) to southwestern California
Native Habitat: Open woodlands and chaparral
Growing ConditionsWater Use: Low , Medium
Light Requirement: Sun , Part Shade , Shade
Soil Moisture: Dry , Moist
Soil pH: Acidic (pH<6.8) , Circumneutral (pH 6.8-7.2)
Drought Tolerance: High
Soil Description: Dry to moist woodland soils. Tolerates clay. pH 5 to 7.
Conditions Comments: Tolerates seasonal flooding.
BenefitUse Ornamental: Valued for its decorative flowers and berries.
Use Wildlife: Flowers attract hummingbirds. Berries attract birds.
Use Other: Hollow stems used as pipe stems by indigenous people.
Warning: Berries may be mildly poisonous if eaten. Sensitivity to a toxin varies with a person’s age, weight, physical condition, and individual susceptibility. Children are most vulnerable because of their curiosity and small size.
Conspicuous Flowers: yes
Attracts: Birds , Hummingbirds
Nectar Source: yes
Deer Resistant: Minimal
Value to Beneficial InsectsSpecial Value to Bumble Bees
This information was provided by the Pollinator Program at The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation.
Find Seed or Plants
Find seed sources for this species at the Native Seed Network.
View propagation protocol from Native Plants Network.
National Wetland Indicator Status
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
Native Seed Network - Corvallis, OR
BibliographyBibref 7 - Jepson Manual: Higher Plants of California (1993) Hickman, J.C. (ed.)
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Additional resourcesUSDA: Find Lonicera hispidula in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Lonicera hispidula in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Lonicera hispidula
MetadataRecord Modified: 2015-06-15
Research By: TWC Staff, GDG