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Achillea millifolium
  • Common name: Western White Yarrow
  • Zone: 4
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 24-30 in. x 24 in.
  • Native to: Idaho

Western White Yarrow is a tough evergreen native that has fragrant, lacy foliage with dense umbels of tiny white flowers in summer. Can spread. Great attractor for beneficial insects.  Tolerates variety of soil conditions. Pollinators: Butterflies and native bees. More information here.

Achnatherum hymenoides
  • Common name: Indian Ricegrass
  • Zone: 3
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 12-24 in. x 24 in.
  • Native to: Idaho

Indian Ricegrass has 1-2 ft. flowering stems that are beautifully airy and graceful. A great accent in any part of a xeric landscape also suitable for meadows. Tolerates clay. The seed heads are attractive in dried arrangements and seed-eating birds love them.  Not currently available. More info here.

Arenaria kingii
  • Common name: King's Sandwort
  • Zone: 4
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 8 in. x 10 in.
  • Native to: Idaho

King’s Sandwort:  The long grass-like leaves of this native sandwort are evergreen. In early spring they are decorated by an open spray of delicate white flowers. Tidy. Ideal for a rock garden or edging a pathway.

Artemisia tridenta ssp. vaseyana
  • Common name: Mountain Big Sage
  • Zone: 4
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 3 ft. x 3 ft.
  • Native to: Idaho

Mountain Big Sage is a more compact, tidy version of the common big sagebrush. Grey-green foliage provides structure in the garden and winter interest.  More info here.

Artemisia tridentata ssp. tridentata
  • Common name: Basin Big Sagebrush
  • Zone: 4
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 6' x 4'
  • Native to: Idaho

The keystone species in our native landscape. Big sagebrush grows at lower elevations and needs no water once established. It is the  principal food and cover for sage grouse.   More information here.

Artemisia versicolor
  • Common name: Curlicue Sagebrush
  • Zone: 4
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 10-16" high x 6-8' wide
  • Native to: Eurasia

Curlicue Sage has frothy mounds of silvery leaves that provide four season texture and color-contrast to any xeric landscape. This delightful Asian sagebrush cousin will add structure and interest to a colorful border.

Aster alpinus ‘Goliath’
  • Common name: 'Goliath' Alpine Aster
  • Zone: 4
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 10 in. x 10 in.
  • Native to: Europe

‘Goliath’ Alpine Aster is an early-blooming aster with unusually large and showy purple/blue flowers. Neat and tidy in the garden after its glorious springtime show.

Celtis reticulata
  • Common name: Netleaf Hackberry
  • Zone: 4
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: to 20 ft. x 20 ft.
  • Native to: Idaho

Hackberry is a deciduous native tree, growing on rocky outcroppings on dry slopes in Southern Idaho. Often gnarly, graceful and sculptural in form. Great tree for small areas; orange berries loved by birds; Native Americans crushed and ate the fruit with parched corn.

Cercocarpus ledifolius
  • Common name: Curleaf Mountain Mahogany
  • Zone: 4
  • Exposure: Sun / part shade
  • Height x Width: 10-15 ft. x 8-10 ft.
  • Native to: Idaho

Mountain Mahogany is an attractive evergreen, large shrub to small tree with spreading open crown of thick, twisted branches and furrowed reddish brown bark This beautiful Owyhee County native will tolerate heavy pruning and is browsed into beautiful bonsai-like shapes in the wild. More information here.

Chamaebatiaria millefolium
  • Common name: Fernbrush
  • Zone: 4
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 5 ft. x 5 ft.
  • Native to: Idaho

Fernbrush is a multi-stemmed native shrub to small tree with red, shredding bark. Fragrant fern-like foliage and white clusters of rose-like flowers in mid-summer. Adaptable to many soil types and requires little or no additional moisture once established.

Ephedra minima
  • Common name: Dwarf Mormon Tea
  • Zone: 5
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 4 in. x 12 in.
  • Native to: Asia

This is the prostrate form of the native Mormon Tea shrub. Thin stems intertwine on the ground to gradually form a thick, sprawling, evergreen groundcover. In mid-summer dozens of bright red berry-like flowers appear, nestled down in the foliage. From Tibet, rare.

Ephedra viridis
  • Common name: Mormon Tea
  • Zone: 3
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 4 ft. x 4 ft.
  • Native to: Nevada, Utah

Mormon Tea is an evergreen shrub is native to the high desert of Nevada, Utah and other western states. The bare green stems are marked by the tiny brown ridges which are actually the plant’s leaves. Dramatic!

Ericameria nauseosa
  • Common name: Rubber Rabbitbrush
  • Zone: 3
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 2-6 ft. x 2-4 ft.
  • Native to: Idaho

Rubber Rabbitbrush is a tough native shrub covered with brilliant display of golden flowers in fall. Its upright form and graceful silver foliage make it an ideal foundation plant in the xeric garden. Supports butterflies & birds. Needs good drainage. Pollinators: butterflies, small bees.    Not currently available. More info here.

Erigeron linearis
  • Common name: Desert Yellow Fleabane
  • Zone: 4
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 6 in. x 6 in.
  • Native to: Idaho

Desert Yellow Fleabane is a small native daisy with cheerful yellow flowers in summer. Grows in poor soil with little care. Not currently available.

Erigeron pumilus
  • Common name: Shaggy Fleabane
  • Zone: 5
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 8" x 8"
  • Native to: Idaho

Cheerful little Shaggy Fleabane (Shaggy Daisy) is native to the Boise Foothills. It will survive without additional water, but will flower much more vigorously if given a bit of extra moisture.

Eriogonum compositum
  • Common name: Arrow Leaf Buckwheat
  • Zone: 4
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 12-18 in. x 12-18 in.
  • Native to: Idaho

Arrow Leaf Buckwheat has big oval, pointed leaves basal leaves with leafless stems of cream to yellow pom-poms overhead. Thrives in hot, dry and poor soils. Unusually large buckwheat.

Eriogonum ovalifolium var. purpureum
  • Common name: Cushion Buckwheat
  • Zone: 4
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 10" x 10"
  • Native to: Idaho

This Buckwheat forms dense mounds of grey-green leaves topped by pinky-white pom-poms in late spring. Great for rock gardens or for any small space in the landscape. Choice!

Eriogonum racemosum
  • Common name: Redroot Buckwheat
  • Zone: 4
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 16" x 10"
  • Native to: Southwest

This striking buckwheat bears long racemes of white or white/pink flowers atop tall, leafless stems. In its native habitat of low foothills and mountain dry meadows from New Mexico to Nevada, it can grow in colonies of hundreds or thousands

Eriogonum strictum
  • Common name: Strict Buckwheat
  • Zone: 5
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 18 in. x 24 in.
  • Native to: Idaho

Strict Buckwheat has gorgeous sprays of pinkish-white flowers that glow in the late summer/early autumn garden. Late season nectar source for honeybees. Boise foothills native.

Eriogonum strictum ‘Leslie Gulch’
  • Common name: Leslie Gulch Strict Buckwheat
  • Zone: 5
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 18" x 24"
  • Native to: Eastern Oregon

This beautiful form of Strict Buckwheat was found in Leslie Gulch, E. Oregon. It blooms in mid-summer with a big spray of tiny white flowers over and attractive mound of sage green basal leaves.

Eriogonum umbellatum
  • Common name: Sulfur Buckwheat
  • Zone: 3
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 6-12 in. x 1-2 ft.
  • Native to: Idaho

Sulfur Buckwheat has bright yellow flower heads, silvery foliage. Spreading, mat-forming perennial that produces cream to sulfur- yellow ball-like clusters of flowers that become copper-red tinted with age. Begins flowering in early summer and continues until the fall. Prefers moderate to dry, well drained soil, do not overwater. Pollinators: butterflies, bees.

Eriophyllum lanatum
  • Common name: Woolly Sunflower
  • Zone: 5
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 3 in. x 6 in.
  • Native to: Idaho

Woolly Sunflower, also called “Oregon Sunshine” (in Oregon!), is one of the real standouts among native Idaho flowering plants. Relatively abundant but usually small in the wild, Woolly Sunflower grows to impressive size in the garden with a bit of extra water. It puts on a beautiful flush of yellow daisies in the late spring; foliage is semi-evergreen and handsome otherwise.

Fallugia paradoxa
  • Common name: Apache Plume
  • Zone: 4
  • Exposure: Sun / part shade
  • Height x Width: 3-5 ft. x 3-5 ft.
  • Native to: Southwest US

Apache Plume is a sturdy multi-branched southwest native shrub provides good bird habitat. Small white, rose-like flowers emerge over a long blooming season and are followed by charming, fluffy seed heads. More info here.

Gaura lindheimeri
  • Common name: Gaura
  • Zone: 5
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 4 ft. x 4 ft.
  • Native to: Texas

Gaura has long graceful spikes of pinkish or white blooms float on the breeze from mid-summer to fall. Long-blooming, dramatic, easy.

Helianthus maximiliani
  • Common name: Maximilian’s Sunflower
  • Zone: 4
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: to 6 ft. high
  • Native to: Southwest US

Maximilian’s Sunflower is a vigorous perennial sunflower that comes back from roots every spring and grows to 5 or 6 feet. In late summer a profusion of smallish sunflowers, cover the upright stalks. Excellent fall interest, great along fences. Late season nectar source for bees and butterflies.

Hesperaloe parviflora
  • Common name: Texas Red Yucca
  • Zone: 5
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 4' x 3'
  • Native to: Texas

Tall spikes of tubular red flowers in summer attract hummingbirds. The basal leaves are long and narrow, but not sharp as in a true Yucca. Needs well-drained soil.

Heterotheca villosa
  • Common name: Hairy Goldenaster
  • Zone: 4
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 6-12" x 6-12"
  • Native to: Idaho

Hairy Goldenaster  covers itself completely with small yellow aster-like flowers in early summer. Needs no water once established.

Krascheninnikovia lanata
  • Common name: Winterfat
  • Zone: 4
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 3 ft. x 3 ft.
  • Native to: Idaho

Winterfat is a low-growing, compact xeric shrub. Produces tiny white flowers in summer followed by ornamental woolly white seed heads in fall. Exciting in dried arrangements. Attracts birds & tolerates alkaline soils. An eye-catcher.

Lavandula x intermedia ‘Grosso’
  • Common name: Lavender “Grosso”
  • Zone: 5
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 3 ft. x 3 ft.
  • Native to: Mediterranean

Lavender “Grosso” is a vigorous, large lavender with long, deep purple flower spikes in early to mid-summer. Extremely drought- tolerant, good foundation planting.Flower spikes may be cut back for repeat bloom. Evergreen foliage. Pollinators: bees.

 

Machaeranthera canescens
  • Common name: Hoary Aster
  • Zone: 4
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 18-24 in. x 18 in.
  • Native to: Idaho

Hoary Aster: The big purple daisies of this fall-blooming biennial light up the Boise foothills in fall. In the garden, the plants will flower vigorously, then self-sow and reappear the following year. Pollinators: bees, butterflies.

Mahonia repens
  • Common name: Creeping Oregon Grape
  • Zone: 4
  • Exposure: Sun or shade
  • Height x Width: 1-2 ft. x 2-3 ft.
  • Native to: Idaho

Creeping Oregon Grape is a low-growing, evergreen shrub. Bright yellow flowers bloom in spring followed by blue berries. Leaves are evergreen. Adaptable to many soil types and does well in full sun or full shade. Nectar and pollen source for native bees.

Oenothera caespitosa
  • Common name: Fragrant Evening Primrose
  • Zone: 5
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 6 in. x 12 in.
  • Native to: Idaho

Fragrant Evening Primrose: Silken white blossoms unfurl each morning over shiny deep green mounds of leaves, slipping to a rosy tint with midday heat. The fragrance is sweet and exotic, contrasting sharply with the native surroundings of dry foothills, shrub steppe and pinyon-juniper. Tolerant of poor well-drained soils, and clay. More information here.

 

Oenothera pallida
  • Common name: Pale Evening Primrose
  • Zone: 3-4
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 12" x 12"
  • Native to: Idaho

This Boise Foothills native produces scads of lovely white flowers and, given a little extra water, can bloom all summer. The plants spread by root and could be invasive in the wrong situation. Needs no water once established.

Oenothera speciosa
  • Common name: Showy Evening Primrose
  • Zone: 5
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 1 ft. and spreading
  • Native to: Southwest US

Showy Evening Primrose is a heat-loving beauty and thrives in sunny, dry areas along baking south and west facing walls and pavement areas. It can spread rapidly on shallow roots when the hot summer weather arrives and can overrun smaller, less vigorous plants. Preferring unimproved, well-drained soils, this plant requires little extra water once established. More information here.

 

Penstemon cyananthus
  • Common name: Wastach Penstemon
  • Zone: 4
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 24-36 in. x 12 in.
  • Native to: Idaho

Wastach Penstemon is a beautiful, showy native penstemon with attractive dark green glossy leaves and tall stalks of densely packed, relatively small rich blue flowers in early spring to late summer Requires minimal care. Resistant to diseases and grows well in poor soils. Pollinators: hummingbirds and bees. Not currently available.

Penstemon eatonii
  • Common name: Firecracker Penstemon
  • Zone: 4
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 40 in. x 24 in.
  • Native to: Southwest US

Firecracker Penstemon has vivid red blooms, dark green basal leaves. Upright, woody-based, evergreen or semi-evergreen perennial with blue-green leaves. In early summer, bears tubular, bright scarlet flowers. Prefers poor to moderately fertile, well drained soil and full sun. Great for dry desert-scapes. Pollinators: hummingbirds and bees.

 

Purshia tridentata
  • Common name: Bitterbrush
  • Zone: 4
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 5-6 ft. x 4-6 ft.
  • Native to: Idaho

Bitterbrush is a highly branched native shrub often with spectacular yellow spring bloom. Could replace forsythia in native, xeric gardens. Good wildlife habitat. Pollinators: butterflies, bees. More info here.

Sphaeralcea grossulariifolia
  • Common name: Gooseberry Globemallow
  • Zone: 4
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 2-3 ft. x 2-3 ft.
  • Native to: Idaho

Gooseberry Globemallow’s red-orange flowers bloom in spring & summer. Attracts all kinds of native pollinators.

Sphaeralcea munroana
  • Common name: Munro's globemallow
  • Zone: 4
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 1-2 ft. x 1-2 ft.
  • Native to: Idaho

Munro’s globemallow has dark maroon stems with dark-green, cut, lobed leaves and many heads of clear orange flowers.

Yucca glauca
  • Common name: Soapweed Yucca
  • Zone: 4
  • Exposure: Sun
  • Height x Width: 3' x 2'
  • Native to: West central U.S.

This handsome yucca has narrow, evergreen, spiky leaves and sends up a tall stalk of fragrant white flowers in late summer. Likes full sun and well-drained, sandy loam. More information here.