Theodore Payne California Native Plant Database

Arctostaphylos densiflora 'Sentinel'

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Botanical Name: Arctostaphylos densiflora 'Sentinel'
Common Name: Sentinel Manzanita

This medium-size manzanita makes a beautiful garden specimen. Its upright habit reveals smooth bark with rich chocolate color. Easily pruned into a small tree shape. Tolerates heavy soils and garden care.

Plant Family: Ericaceae
Plant Type: Shrub
Height by Width: 6-8' H x 6' W
Growth Habit: Upright form
Deciduous/Evergreen: Evergreen
Growth Rate: Slow
Sun Exposure: Full to partial sun
Soil Preference: Adaptable
Water Requirements: Drought-tolerant to occasional
Cold Hardy to: 15-20 degrees F
Flower Season: Winter
Flower Color: White to light pink
Endangered?: Not listed
Distribution: Selected for use in the garden; introduced by Saratoga Horticultural Foundation
Natural Habitat: Old sand dunes in Sonoma County

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Care and Maintenance
  • With proper placement, manzanitas require little maintenance. Selectively prune to remove dead branches or to reveal structure. Avoid unnecessary pruning. Manzanitas are prone to branch die-back, caused by a naturally occurring fungal pathogen. When removing dead branches, sterilize pruning shears with alcohol between cuts to prevent the spread of the disease.

Other Names
  • Bornstein, Carol, David Fross, and Bart O'Brien. California Native Plants for the Garden. Los Olivos, CA: Cachuma Press. 2005.
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