Theodore Payne California Native Plant Database




Native Plant Horticulture 101: How to Plant and Care for Native Plants

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Our planting guides provide a quick overview of how to plant California native plants. The links below will take you to more detailed discussions concerning plant care. You can also find information concerning the care and maintenance of specific plants on the individual plant pages in the Plant Library.

This guide, and its companion in Spanish, provide a quick summary of how to prepare and plant California native plants. You'll also find notes on what to expect in Fall, Winter, Spring, and Summer.
Summer provides unique challenges for planting. But there's still plenty of planting you can do. Follow these tips, and you'll be much more successful in getting your plants through the heat and drought of summer.
  • Seasonal Planting Guides for Native Plants
Yes, there are seasons in California. The more you spend time in your garden with California's native flora, the more you'll see the ebb and flow of those seasons. Each plant species has its own time to wake up, bloom, go to seed, then fall into dormancy. Different birds and pollinators will appear. Colors and fragrances appear and vanish. This is one of the joys of gardening.
The following guides provide some tips for each season. You'll want to adapt your activities in the garden just as the plants adapt to different water, sun, and temperature conditions.


  • How do I plant?


  • How do I water?



  • How do I prune?


  • What about mulch?



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