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Products > Santolina chamaecyparissus
Santolina chamaecyparissus - Gray Lavender Cotton

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Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Shrub
Family: Asteraceae (Sunflowers)
Origin: Mediterranean (Europe)
Evergreen: Yes
Flower Color: Yellow
Bloomtime: Spring/Summer
Height: 1-2 feet
Width: 3-4 feet
Exposure: Full Sun
Seaside: Yes
Summer Dry: Yes
Deer Tolerant: Yes
Irrigation (H2O Info): Low Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: < 0 F
Santolina chamaecyparissus (Gray Lavender Cotton) - A low, dense, long lived evergreen shrub that grows to 2 feet tall and 3-4 feet wide. The hairy gray aromatic pinnately-lobed narrow 1 inch long leaves with tiny leaflets densely clothe the hairy shoots. Solitary yellow button flowers bloom on 6 inch tall stalks during the late spring and summer. Plant in full sun to part day sun and irrigate very little if at all once established - truly a drought tolerant plant! Hardy to 0 F or below and useful in USDA Zones 5b to 10. Tolerates seaside conditions and is resistant to animal predation. This plant does particularly well in coastal California garden with little or no supplemental water - in situations such as this a flowing carpet effect of foliage, under 1 foot tall, can develop. A great plant for a formal edging or allowed to flow for an informal look. It is native to dry banks and rocky slopes in western and central Mediterranean region from Portugal to Yugoslavia. The name for the Genus comes from the Latin phrase 'sanctum linum' which means "holy flax", a name applied to one of the green species of Santolina for its medicinal qualities and the specific epithet given to this plant by Linnaeus in 1753 and comes from the Greeks word 'chamae' which means "dwarf", "low-growing" or "growing on the ground" and 'kyparissos', a word for "cypress" which combine to mean a "dwarf or ground cypress". We have grown this great plant since our nursery first opened in 1979 and also grow Green Santolina, Santolina rosmarinifolia and Santolina neapolitana 'Lemon Queen'.  The information on this page is based on research conducted in our nursery library and from online sources as well as from observations made of this plant as it grows in our nursery, in the nursery's garden and in other gardens that we have visited. We have also incorporated comments received from others and always appreciate getting feedback of any kind from those who have some additional information, particularly if this information is contrary to what we have written or includes additional cultural tips that would aid others in growing  Santolina chamaecyparissus.