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Jepson Ceanothus
Ceanothus jepsonii
About Jepson Ceanothus (Ceanothus jepsonii) 1 Nurseries Carry This Plant Ceanothus jepsonii is a species of shrub in the buckthorn family Rhamnaceae known by the common names musk brush and Jepson ceanothus. It is endemic to California, where it grows in dry, shrubby habitat in the San Francisco Bay Area and the Coast Ranges to the north, often on serpentine soils. This species of shrub is variable, particularly across its two Varieties: Ceanothus jepsonii var. jepsonii is a spreading plant growing up to about half a meter tall. It bears flower clusters of blue or purple flowers and spherical fruits. var. albiflorus is a white-flowered variety approaching a meter in maximum height. Its fruits are more oblong. Both varieties have firm, toothed evergreen leaves oppositely arranged, curved, and with their edges turned under. The flowers tend to have a musky odor.
Plant Description
Plant Type
Plant Type

1.6 ft tall


Flower Color
Flower Color
Blue, White, Purple

Wildlife Supported

Landscaping Information
Full Sun


Common uses
Common uses
Bank Stabilization, Bird Gardens, Butterfly Gardens, Bee Gardens

For propagating by seed: Hot water only gives poor to fair results; hot water and 3 mos. stratification may improve germination.

Sunset Zones
Sunset Zones?
7, 14, 15, 16

Natural Setting
Site Type
Site Type
Dry rocky slopes, serpentine soils

Annual Precipitation: 22.4" - 70.5", Summer Precipitation: 0.26" - 2.88", Coldest Month: 31.5" - 50.8", Hottest Month: 57.1" - 74.3", Humidity: 0.66" - 24.69", Elevation: 58" - 5827"

Alternative Names
Common Names: Musk Brush

Sources include: Wikipedia. All text shown in the "About" section of these pages is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. Plant observation data provided by the participants of the California Consortia of Herbaria, Sunset information provided by Jepson Flora Project. Propogation from seed information provided by the Santa Barbara Botanical Garden from "Seed Propagation of Native California Plants" by Dara E. Emery. Sources of plant photos include CalPhotos, Wikimedia Commons, and independent plant photographers who have agreed to share their images with Calscape. Other general sources of information include Calflora, CNPS Manual of Vegetation Online, Jepson Flora Project, Las Pilitas, Theodore Payne, Tree of Life, The Xerces Society, and information provided by CNPS volunteer editors, with special thanks to Don Rideout. Climate data used in creation of plant range maps is from PRISM Climate Group, Oregon State University, using 30 year (1981-2010) annual "normals" at an 800 meter spatial resolution.

Links:   Jepson eFlora Taxon Page  CalPhotos  Wikipedia  Calflora

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