logo Calflora Illustrated Plant List 

Low flammability shade-loving plants for near structure

This is a list of local native species for the Santa Cruz Mountain area. I am developing this list in response to homeowners looking for guidance for what is safe to plant in a shady, irrigated garden near structures. Ideally all plant material should not be planted within the first 5 ft of structures according to latest recommendations from CalFire (2020). All of these plants form a low flammability ground cover ranging in height from 2 to 6 inches (not including early spring flower stalks which may rise above foliage). For questions, please email me at: Nikki@cal-sisters.com For more info on defensible space see: https://www.firesafemarin.org/defensible-space
15 PLANTS
Aquilegia formosa    Crimson columbine,  Sitka columbine,  Western columbine
native
Perennial herb

RANUNCULACEAE

Aquilegia formosa
2013 James Gonsman
Aquilegia formosa
2021 Emily Sluiman
Aquilegia formosa
2019 Diane Etchison

Asarum caudatum    Creeping wild ginger,  Longtail wild ginger
native
Perennial herb

ARISTOLOCHIACEAE

Asarum caudatum
2007 Shawn DeCew
Asarum caudatum
Gerald and Buff Corsi 2009 California Academy of Sciences
Asarum caudatum
2017 Gregory Arena

Clinopodium douglasii    Yerba buena
native
Perennial herb

LAMIACEAE

Clinopodium douglasii
2019 Gary McDonald
Clinopodium douglasii
2012 Gary McDonald
Clinopodium douglasii
2012 Gary McDonald

Dicentra formosa    Pacific bleeding heart,  Pacific bleedinghearts
native
Perennial herb

PAPAVERACEAE

Dicentra formosa
2021 Saskia Raether
Dicentra formosa
2018 Chico Hiking Association
Dicentra formosa
2018 Matt Berger

Potentilla glandulosa    Sticky cinquefoil
native
Perennial herb

ROSACEAE

Potentilla glandulosa
2020 Mary Conway
Potentilla glandulosa
2019 Diane Etchison
Potentilla glandulosa
2020 Diane Etchison

Fragaria vesca    California strawberry,  Wild strawberry,  Wood strawberry
native
Perennial herb

ROSACEAE

Fragaria vesca
2020 Cara Wilcox
Fragaria vesca
2020 Cara Wilcox
Fragaria vesca
2020 Susan McDougall

Fritillaria affinis    Checker lily,  Mission bells
native
Perennial herb (bulb)

LILIACEAE

Fritillaria affinis
2020 Karen Swift
Fritillaria affinis
2020 Karen Swift
Fritillaria affinis
2020 Susan McDougall

Horkelia californica    California horkelia
native
Perennial herb

ROSACEAE

Horkelia californica
2019 David Greenbeger
Horkelia californica
2020 Mary Conway
Horkelia californica
2010 Neal Kramer

Maianthemum dilatatum    False lily of the valley,  False lily of the vally,  Pacific may lily
native
Perennial herb

RUSCACEAE

Maianthemum dilatatum
2020 Doug Allshouse
Maianthemum dilatatum
2020 Susan McDougall
Maianthemum dilatatum
2008 Matt Below

Maianthemum stellatum    Starry false lily of the valley
native
Perennial herb

RUSCACEAE

Maianthemum stellatum
2020 Bob Sweatt
Maianthemum stellatum
2020 Jean Anderson
Maianthemum stellatum
2020 Susan McDougall

Oxalis oregana    Redwood sorrel
native
Perennial herb

OXALIDACEAE

Oxalis oregana
2020 Kim Cabrera
Oxalis oregana
2021 Cyril Guyot
Oxalis oregana
2020 Janice Kuch

Polypodium californicum    California polypody
native
Fern

POLYPODIACEAE

Polypodium californicum
2013 Neal Kramer
Polypodium californicum
2015 Keir Morse
Polypodium californicum
2013 Neal Kramer

Viola adunca    Blue violet,  Dog violet,  Hookedspur violet
native
Perennial herb

VIOLACEAE

Viola adunca
2018 Emily Allen
Viola adunca
2008 Steve Matson
Viola adunca
2018 Zoe mz

Viola ocellata    Pinto violet,  Twoeyed violet,  Western heart's ease
native
Perennial herb

VIOLACEAE

Viola ocellata
2020 Amy Rapport
Viola ocellata
2018 Stacie Wolny
Viola ocellata
2018 Stacie Wolny

Viola sempervirens    Evergreen violet,  Redwood violet
native
Perennial herb

VIOLACEAE

Viola sempervirens
2018 Saskia Raether
Viola sempervirens
2019 Julian Geoghegan
Viola sempervirens
2021 Mikhela Aiken