If garden natives bloom before local wild natives...

Then maybe I don't have to remove them after all? I saw the Arctostaphylos "Winter Glow" in bloom. It's a lovely creeping very low ground cover manzanita.

Arctostaphylos "Winter Glow"

After five or maybe six years, it's still only about 3 X 5 (and not the 8X8 as advertised) but it tumbles over a bank very prettily.

How sweet the little urn-shaped blossoms are...

Already blossoming - in early December!

I came with my trusty Japanese pruning saw, but I couldn't do it. I walked away from the task.

Then today I realized - Hey! None of the local brittle leaf manzanita -  Arctostaphylos tomentosa ssp. crustacea - are anywhere near in bloom yet:

This manzanita is a shrub about 3 feet tall. Others on this slope are much taller. 

It is not in bloom -- the tight little buds that formed last year are still biding their time:

These buds are dormant still
So - if the "Winter Glow" manzanita are all pollinated before the brittle leaf ones - then there is very little danger of hybridization! Besides, they are low growing ground covers, not the tall shrubby kind that grows natively here.

There are a lot of local native manzanita growing wild around here - and I have only five  nursery bought manzanitas in total. If you are not going to propagate local natives, this situation is OK. You are not going to change the nature of the local plants by a tiny bit of potential hybridization - this according to experts I've been asking.

My two "Dr Hurd" manzanitas, however, may have to go - they are not blooming yet, and they are a similar upright form of manzanita to the local ones. They are therefore more prone to hybridization. I'll keep an eye on their bloom time. If they gotta go, well, I'll steel myself. (Maybe.)

For more on the manzanitas that grow on our property, see this "native plant of the month" post.


That assumes you're propagating from seed though. If instead you propagate from cuttings, creating a clone, then at least for propagation purposes, cross pollination is not a concern ;)