San Marcos Growers LogoSan Marcos Growers
New User
Wholesale Login
Enter Password
Home Products Purchase Gardens About Us Resources Contact Us
Nursery Closure
Search Utilities
Plant Database
Search Plant Name
Detail Search Avanced Search Go Button
Search by size, origins,
details, cultural needs
Website Search Search Website GO button
Search for any word
Site Map
Retail Locator
Plant Listings


  for JULY

Natives at San Marcos Growers
Succulents at San Marcos Growers
 Weather Station

Products > Plecostachys serpyllifolia
Plecostachys serpyllifolia - Cobweb Bush

Note: This plant is not currently for sale. This is an archive page preserved for informational use.  
Image of Plecostachys serpyllifolia
[2nd Image]
Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Shrub
Family: Asteraceae (Sunflowers)
Origin: South Africa (Africa)
Evergreen: Yes
Flower Color: Pink & White
Bloomtime: Summer/Fall
Synonyms: [Helichrysum petiolare microphyllum, Hort.]
Height: 2-3 feet
Width: 4-5 feet
Exposure: Sun or Shade
Seaside: Yes
Summer Dry: Yes
Irrigation (H2O Info): Low Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 20-25 F
Plecostachys serpyllifolia (Cobweb Bush) - A decorative fine textured grey-leafed plant from the Cape Peninsula of South Africa that spreads and sprawls, forming a dense low growing shrub to 4 feet wide and 2 to 3 feet tall can get taller in a confined space and also when trimmed to maintain a narrower plant. The flowers are not overly showy but appear from summer into fall and are composed of small yarrow-like composite flowers with cream-colored rays and pink disc flowers.

Plant in full sun to light shade. A plant that grows great along the beach and in coastal areas where it is very drought resistant, even to the point that it has been noted spreading into non-irrigated areas.

In its native South Africa it can be found on seasonally moist sandy areas along the coast and lower mountain slopes from the winter rainfall Western Cape through the more summer rainfall Eastern Cape into southern KwaZulu-Natal. The name for the genus comes from the Greek words 'plekein" which means "to twist" or "plait" which likely is in reference to the twisted and tangled growth habit and 'stachys' meaning "an ear of grain" or "spike" in reference to the shape of the inflorescence. The specific epithet is in reference to the foliage being similar to that of Creeping Thyme, Thymus serpyllum.

This plant was first introduced in California in the late 1980's as Helichrysum petiolatum microphyllum or 'Nana' and, though not declared a weed in California, this plant has been noted as an escaped garden plant in Portugal and salt marshes and sloughs in Ventura and Santa Barbara counties. While a useful and attractive plant in the garden, its tendency to seed about and escape the garden is of definite concern and it should not be in gardens interfacing non-cultivated wildland coastal areas. For this reason we voluntarily decided not to continue production of this plant in 2014 after growing it in the nursery since 1992. We first received this plant as Helichrysum petiolatum 'Nana' from Western Hills Nursery in 1989. 

This information about Plecostachys serpyllifolia displayed is based on research conducted in our horticultural library and from reliable online resources. We also will relate observations made about it as it grows in our nursery gardens and other gardens we have visited, as well how the crops have performed in containers in our nursery field. We will also incorporate comments that we receive from others and we welcome hearing from anyone with additional information, particularly if they can share any cultural information that would aid others in growing it.