Green Leaf Manzanita

Arctostaphylos patula

Photo: Charles Webber © California Academy of Sciences
Heath Family (Ericaceae)
Ovate to rounded; 1-1 ¾” long; smooth; bright green
Flowers are bell-shaped, creamy white with pink hues. Large fuzzy berries in the fall
May and June
Smooth, red bark is very distinctive, and peels away to expose pale green new bark growth underneath.
Gravelly, barren, sandy or dry rocky slopes; serpentine outcrops; especially burned or logged areas. Common in post-fire brush communities. Sprouts from basal burl or root crown. Common in CA chaparral.
Several varieties grow forming enormous tree-like bushes (along Deer Springs Trail in Idyllwild) to low spreading shrub (along lower RV trail). Tea made from the berries was used to treat constipation; tea from the bark, diarrhea. Excellent browse for deer. Berries eaten by deer, small mammals, birds. “Manzanita” is Spanish for “little apple;” Genus name Arctostaphylos mean “beargrape” (Gr.) referring to the fondness shown by bears for fruits of these shrubs.
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