Marin Master Gardeners
University of California
Marin Master Gardeners

Plant Guide

Fremontodendron californicum 'Pacific Sunset'

Common Name
Pacific Sunset Flannel Bush
CA Native
California Native
Plant Type
Shrub
Size
15' x 15'
Flower Color
Deep Orange-Yellow
Bloom Time
  • Spring
Leaves
Dark Green
Evergreen
Evergreen
Deer Resistant
Rarely Damaged
Wildlife Value
  • Attracts Beneficial Insects
  • Bees
  • Butterfly & Other Insect Nectar
Growth Rate
Fast
Hardiness
Hardy
Adverse Growth Factors
None
Special Features
  • Low Maintenance
  • Showy Flowers
Water Use
  • Drought Tolerant
  • Low
Soil pH
6.5-7.5 (neutral)
Exposure
  • Full Sun
Soil Type
Not Particular
Drainage
Well Drained
Description and Cultural Plant Tips

This cultivar is a hybrid between F. californicum & F. mexicanum and  is more resistant to diseases than other Fremontias. It has an upright form with long arching branches that are covered with clear orange-yellow flowers for a long period in mid to late spring. It does well on hillsides and slopes. It can be used for erosion control. It can also be used as a foundation plant and  looks great with Ceanothus which blooms around the same time.

Plant slightly above grade in perfect drainage in full sun. If you have clay soil you may want to use a berm that is mostly sand to improve the drainage. Should do fine on a hillside as long as it gets no summer rain. Do not add any amendments or fertilizers. Tolerates both the coastal and hot, sunny parts of Marin as long as it receives no summer water once established. Roots are shallow so stake for the first couple of years. Can prune lightly to shape.

Attracts native bees and other nectar loving insects. Also make good bird habitat.

Fremontias are susceptible to root rot and will die if given summer water. Do not plant near watered beds.

 

Master Gardener Comments
Varietals

F. 'Ken Taylor' - 4' - 6' x 12' groundcover with golden yellow flowers tinged with orange on the back of petals

F. 'California Glory' - To 20' high. Flowers can be 3 inches across and are a rich yellow inside with a  hint of red outside. Very prolific bloomer over a long period of time

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