Kunzea baxteri
“Scarlet Kunzea”

Photo courtesty of Forrest & Kim Starr

A fast-growing, low-maintenance, evergreen shrub with gorgeous flaming red "bottlebrush flowers and aromatic leaves. Reaching 3’ tall in just 1.5 years, it tops out at about 8’ high and 15’ wide. It can, however, be pruned into just about any shape including a dense hedge or multi-trunked ornamental tree. Abundant 4” long red “bottlebrush” blooms with showy gold stamens appear in Spring, and continue sporadically through much of the year. Ideally suited to Summer-dry Mediterranean climates like ours in the SF Bay Area. A dramatic addition to dry or low-maintenance gardens and a valuable pollinator plant for attracting bees and hummingbirds. It also produces small fruits for feeding birds. Loves sandy soil, but will tolerate any soil type so long as it’s well draining. If fertilizing, avoid those with a high Phosphorus count. Prune lightly after flowering for best habit. May take up to 3 years to flower, but patience will be rewarded! Tolerant of light frosts.

Curious Plantsman

Photo courtesy of Marlin Harms
Low/No Summer Water

Perennial Shrub
USDA zones 9-10