in Tucson, Phoenix,
Arizona and California

Gardening in Tucson, Phoenix, Arizona and California

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Aloysia gratissima: Whitebrush / Beebush

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Form: Shrub with casual shape.
Leaf retention: Deciduous.
Growth rate: Moderate.
Mature Size: 6-10' high.
Flowers: Tiny, tubular, white, strongly vanilla scented, crowded on terminal spikes.
Bloom: Mid winter to fall, especially after rain.
Fruit: Seeds.
Leaves: Small, green, variable shape depending on rain, fragrant.
Stems: Squarish in cross-section. May have small spine at tip. Forms a thicket by forming new stems at stem base.
Wildlife: Attracts bees and butterflies. Browsed by large mammals.
Toxic / Danger: Poisonous to horses, mules, and burros. Possible small spines at stem tips.
Origin: Arizona through Texas and Mexico.

Cultivation and Uses
USDA hardiness zones: 8-11.
Heat tolerant: Yes.
Drought tolerant: Yes.
Sun: Full sun. Flower production is reduced in part shade.
Water once established: Monthly. Supplemental water improves appearance in hottest months.
Soil: Well-drained, pH 6.1-7.8 (slightly acidic to slightly alkaline).
Prune: Can be shaped into a hedge.
Litter: Moderate.
Propagation: Cuttings. Seed is difficult.
Uses: Ornamental, fragrance garden.

Former scientific name Aloysia lycioides. It belongs to the Verbena family (Verbenaceae), which includes lantana, verbena, and the chaste tree. The butterflies are Texan Crescents.

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Aloysia gratissima: Whitebrush / Beebush - flowers

Aloysia gratissima: Whitebrush / Beebush

Aloysia gratissima: Whitebrush / Beebush