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San Francisco Natives Grown by Yerba Buena Nursery

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Plants on this list are species historically native to San Francisco that we grow. It is not a reflection of our current inventory. At any time we will have many or most of the plants on this list, but not all of them; species marked with an asterisk* are of particularly limited availability. Also note our current availability list is not an up to the minute reflection of our inventory. Please call (650) 851-1668 for current availability information.


The text researched for the list of plants below is A Flora of San Francisco California, by John Thomas Howell, et al. As much of the city’s native plant communities had already been destroyed at the time the book was published in 1958, the book relies on the records of earlier botanists for much of its information, so it serves also as a historical record of the growth of the city, and the accompanying disappearance of the flora. Extensive quotes of botanists of different eras throughout the book describe scenes of San Francisco not seen for decades or centuries. If you know the city well, or are just an occasional visitor, it is fascinating to read through the book and find descriptions of the dunes of the Sunset when there were just a few beach cottages, or the grasslands of the Bayview hills before there were shipyards or projects, or the dogwoods growing in the “deep swamps near 6th and Harrison”. And yes, we do have a few copies in for sale in the shop.


Also worth noting is that San Francisco, while still roughly 7 by 7 miles, was once a landscape of fairly diverse habitats, with different species occupying different areas. Attention should be paid to each individual plant’s light, water and soil requirements to ensure success. Less important a factor are the climate variations within the city – plants from the Sunset will adapt to Potrero Hill, and vice versa. Shade gardeners will find a decent but relatively short list of plants from this list – after all, there wasn’t a lot of shade to be had in the scrub and grassland that covered much of San Francisco before the introduction of Cypress, Eucalyptus, and Victorians.

Ferns/Fern Allies
Adiantum jordanii*
Athyrium filix-femina*
Dryopteris arguta*
Pellaea andromedifolia*
Pellaea mucronata*
Polypodium californicum
Polystichum munitum
Pteridium aquilinum*
Woodwardia fimbriata
Equisetum hyemale

Grasses/Grass Allies
Calamagrostis nutkaensis
Carex tumilicola
Deschampsia caespitosa
Festuca californica
Festuca idahoensis
Festuca rubra*
Juncus effusus var. brunneus
Juncus patens
Koeleria macrantha*
Melica californica
Melica imperfecta
Nassella cernua
Nassella lepida
Nassella pulchra
Scirpus cernuus

Allium unifolium
Brodiaea elegans*
Calochortus luteus*
Chloragalum pomeridianum
Lilium pardalinum
Triteleia hyacinthina*
Triteleia laxa*
Zigadenus fremontii*

(usually avaiable in seed form)
Clarkia rubicunda
Collinsia heterophylla
Montia perfoliata
Eschscholzia californica var. maritima
Gilia capitata
Layia platyglossa
Linanthus grandiflorus
Nemophila menziesii
Platystemon californicus

Abronia latifolia*
Achillea millefolium
Anaphalis margaritacea*
Angelica hendersonii*
Aquilegia formosa
Arabis blepharophylla*
Artemisia douglasiana
Armeria maritima*
Cerastium arvense*
Cirsium occidentale*
Cynoglossum grande
Dudleya farinosa
Epipactis gigantea
Erigeron glaucus
Eriogonum latifolium*
Eriophyllum confertiflorum*
Eriophyllum lanatum
Erysimum franciscanum
Fragaria chiloensis
Fragaria vesca
Heracleum lanatum
Heuchera micrantha
Iris douglasiana
Lupinus albifrons var. collinus*
Lupinus polyphyllus*
Mimulus cardinalis
Mimulus guttatus
Monardella villosa
Plantago subnuda
Polygonum paronychia
Potentilla glandulosa
Prunella vulgaris var. lanceolata
Ranunculus californicus*
Salvia spathacea
Satureja douglasii
Scrophularia californica
Sedum spathulifolium
Sidalcea malvaeflora
Sisyrinchium bellum
Sisyrinchium californicum
Solanum umbelliferum*
Solidago californica*
Stachys bullata*
Tellima grandiflora
Thalictrum fendleri var. polycarpum
Viola adunca
Viola pedunculata*
Wyethia angustifolia*
Wyethia helenioides*

Acer negundo
Aesculus californica
Arctostaphylos hookeri ssp. franciscana
Arctostaphylos tomentosa var. rosei
Artemisia californica
Artemisia pycnocephala
Baccharis pilularis
Berberis pinnata
Ceanothus thyrsiflorus*
Cornus sericea
Cornus glabrata*
Corylus cornuta var. californica
Garrya elliptica
Gaultheria shallon
Heteromeles arbutifolia
Holodiscus discolor
Lepechinia calycina*
Lonicera involucrata
Lupinus arboreus
Mimulus aurantiacus
Myrica californica
Oemleria cerasiformis*
Prunus ilicifolia
Quercus agrifolia
Quercus chrysolepis
Rhamnus californica
Rhamnus crocea
Ribes malvaceum
Ribes sanguineum ssp. glutinosum
Rosa californica
Rosa gymnocarpa*
Rubus parviflorus
Salix lasiandra
Salix lasiolepis
Sambucus mexicana
Sambucus racemosa
Symphoricarpos albus
Vaccinium ovatum

Aristolochia californica
Calystegia purpurata ssp. purpurata
Lonicera hispidula var. vacillans
Rubus ursinus

*seldom available

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Yerba Buena Nursery
(650) 851-1668

Visit Us:
@ Pastorino Farms
12511 San Mateo Road (Highway 92)
Half Moon Bay, CA

Mailing Address:
P.O. Box 3188
Half Moon Bay, CA 94019

Open Tuesday - Friday 9 am-4:30 pm, Saturday 9am - 5 pm    CLOSED Sundays & Mondays
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