in Tucson, Phoenix,
and Southern California

Gardening in Tucson, Phoenix, and Southern California

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Leucophyllum frutescens: Texas Barometer Bush / Texas Sage

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Form: Shrub.
Leaf retention: Evergreen but cold deciduous.
Growth rate: Rapid.
Mature Size: 6-8' high and wide.
Flowers: Purple, pink or white flowers.
Bloom: Sporadically spring through fall.
Fruit: Small seed capsule.
Leaves: Small, soft, covered with fine, silvery hairs, gray to greenish, oval with slightly pointed tip, smooth margins.
Stems: No thorns.
Wildlife: Attracts bees. Not browsed by mammals.
Toxic / Danger: No.
Origin: Native to Texas and Mexico.

Cultivation and Uses
USDA hardiness zones: 8-11.
Heat tolerant: Yes, even reflected heat.
Drought tolerant: Yes.
Sun: Full sun. Leggy in part shade.
Water once established: Deep water once a month. Soil must dry out between waterings. Prone to root rot in damp soil.
Soil: Well drained, dry, low organic content, pH 6.6-8.5 (neutral to alkaline). Do not fertilize once established to avoid legginess.
Planting: Can be grown in a large container with drainage holes.
Prune: In late winter before flower buds appear. Do not remove more than one-third of the top growth. Use hand cutter, not shears, for best results. Sheared plants have few to no flowers. Allow to grow 'spiky' for best flower production. Not an appropriate plant for topiary. Disinfect cutting tools before pruning by placing them in a solution of three parts water and one part bleach for five minutes, then rinse with clean water and dry.
Litter: Low.
Propagation: Cuttings and seed.
Uses: Ornamental.

Other common names are Texas Ranger, Purple Sage and Cenizo. Loves heat, humid weather and dry soil. Not a true sage and leaves not palatable.

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