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Arctostaphylos pungens
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Pointleaf Manzanita
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Arctostaphylos pungens

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About Pointleaf Manzanita (Arctostaphylos pungens) Arctostaphylos pungens is a species of manzanita known by the common name pointleaf manzanita. It is native to the southwestern United States and northern to central Mexico, where it grows in chaparral and woodland, and on desert ridges. This is an erect, spreading shrub growing to heights between one and three meters. It has smooth red bark. Its smaller twigs and new leaves are lightly woolly. Mature leaves are leathery, shiny and green, oval to widely lance-shaped, and up to 4 centimeters long. The flower cluster is a spherical cluster of urn-shaped manzanita flowers. The fruit is a drupe 5 to 8 millimeters wide. It is a food source for many kinds of wildlife, and it is harvested by people and made into jam in many parts of Mexico. This shrub thrives in dry, shallow, acidic soils heavy with gravel and sand, and forms relationships with mycorrhizae to obtain extra nutrients and water. The seeds require scarification by wildfire before they can germinate.
Plant Description
Plant Type

Max. Height
3.3 - 12 ft (1 - 3.7 m)


Growth Rate


Flower Color
White, Pink

Flowering Season
Spring, Winter

Native Status

Natural Setting
Site Type
Rocky slopes, ridges,

Sun, Part Shade

Elevation ?
36' - 9398'

Annual Precip. ?
4.6" - 113.6"

Summer Precip. ?
0.17" - 3.34"

Coldest Month ?
28.4° F - 54.6° F

Hottest Month ?
51.3° F - 79.4° F

Humidity ?
0.74 vpd - 34.22 vpd

Soil Description
Prefers sandy or loamy soils. Does not grow well in clay soils.


Sunset Zones ?
2, 3, 7*, 9, 10, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18*, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23

Landscaping Information
Ease of Care
Moderately Easy

Water Requirement ?
Very Low
Extremely Low
Very Low
Moderate - High

Common uses
Hedges, Bird Gardens, Hummingbird Gardens, Bee Gardens

Nursery Availability
Commonly Available

Sources include: Wikipedia. All text shown in the "About" section of these pages is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. Plant observation data provided by the participants of the California Consortia of Herbaria, Sunset information provided by Jepson Flora Project. Propogation from seed information provided by the Santa Barbara Botanical Garden from "Seed Propagation of Native California Plants" by Dara E. Emery. Sources of plant photos include CalPhotos, Wikimedia Commons, and independent plant photographers who have agreed to share their images with Calscape. Other general sources of information include Calflora, CNPS Manual of Vegetation Online, Jepson Flora Project, Las Pilitas, Theodore Payne, Tree of Life, The Xerces Society, and information provided by CNPS volunteer editors, with special thanks to Don Rideout. Climate data used in creation of plant range maps is from PRISM Climate Group, Oregon State University, using 30 year (1981-2010) annual "normals" at an 800 meter spatial resolution.

Links:   Jepson eFlora Taxon Page  CalPhotos  Wikipedia  Calflora

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