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Special Garden Issue

Wild Things

Sometimes Nature Improves on Itself. The Resulting Cultivars Can Be Just Right for a Tamer Suburban Setting.

May 18, 2003|SUSAN HEEGER

Most of us lack the space to plant a full complement of wild natives in our yards. Buckwheat and sagebrush can ramble over acres. California lilacs might grow as tall as trees. But if wild plants are too big--or especially touchy about soil or water, or if they bloom in the wrong shade for your color palette--you have some options. Thanks to horticulturists and native plant nurseries, there are new and different versions--or cultivars--of these wild plants just right for suburban lots.

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Resource Guide

Native plant cultivars can be purchased at Santa Barbara Botanic Garden, (805) 682-4726; and by wholesale buyers at San Marcos Growers, Santa Barbara, (805) 683-1561; Native Sons, Arroyo Grande, (805) 481-5996.

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