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California Saltbush Back to Plant Page
Extriplex californica

Zoom To My AddressZoom To California Estimated Plant Range

About California Saltbush (Extriplex californica) Atriplex californica is a species of saltbush known by the common name California saltbush, or California orache. It is native to coastal California and Baja California, where it grows in areas with saline soils, such as beaches and salt marshes. This is a perennial herb growing from a fleshy caudex and taproot. Many stems spread to a maximum width of about 80 centimeters and 30 centimeters in height. The scaly gray-green leaves are lance-shaped to oval and less than 3 centimeters long. The plant may be monoecious or dioecious, with some plants having both male and female flower types, and others having just one. Both types of flower cluster are rough clusters of tiny flowers.
Plant Description
Plant Type
Perennial herb

Max. Height
1 - 2.6 ft (0.3 - 0.8 m)

Flower Color
Green, Cream, Yellow

Flowering Season

Native Status

Natural Setting
Site Type
Sandy places, dunes, salt marshes


Elevation ?
-1512' - 1274'

Annual Precip. ?
7.3" - 34.1"

Summer Precip. ?
0.14" - 1.14"

Coldest Month ?
39.9° F - 57.5° F

Hottest Month ?
57.7° F - 81.7° F

Humidity ?
0.86 vpd - 33.27 vpd

Fast, Standing

Landscaping Information
Ease of Care
Moderately Easy

Water Requirement ?
Extremely Low
Very Low
Moderate - High

Common uses
Bird Gardens

Other Names
Botanical Names
Atriplex californica

Common Names
California Orache

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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