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Shadscale
Atriplex canescens
  
About Shadscale (Atriplex canescens) 15 Nurseries Carry This Plant Atriplex canescens (Chamiso, Chamiza, Four wing saltbush, Four-wing saltbush, Fourwing saltbush) is a species of evergreen shrub in the Amaranthaceae family, which is native to the western United States. Fourwing saltbush has a highly variable form, and readily hybridizes with several other species in the Atriplex genus. The degree of polyploidy also results in variations in form. Its height can vary from 1 foot to 10 feet, but 2 to 4 feet is most common. The leaves are thin and 0.5 to 2 inches long. It is most readily identified by its fruits, which have four wings at roughly 90 degree angles and are densely packed on long stems. The fruit stem resembles a mass of corn flakes.

Atriplex canscens is a great bird plant. Best to plant in dry salty soils. Susceptible to root rot unless drought or salt stressed.
Plant Description
Plant Type
Plant Type
Shrub

Size
Size
1 - 10 ft tall
3 - 7 ft wide

Form
Form
Upright, Mounding

Growth Rate
Growth Rate
Fast, Slow

Dormancy
Dormancy
Summer Semi-Deciduous, Evergreen

Flower Color
Flower Color
Yellow, Green

Flowering Season
Flowering Season
Summer, Spring

Wildlife Supported
 
Very important bird plant in its natural range. Also attracts native bees and many butterfly species.

 
Butterflies & moths hosted ( 6 confirmed , 10 likely * ) SHOW ALL

Landscaping Information
Sun
Sun
Full Sun

Moisture
Moisture
Low

Summer Irrigation
Summer Irrigation
Max 1x / month once established

Nurseries
Nurseries

Ease of Care
Ease of Care
Moderately Easy

Cold Tolerance
Cold Tolerance
Tolerates cold to 0 - 10° F

Soil Drainage
Soil Drainage
Fast, Medium, Slow

Soil Description
Soil Description
Tolerates a wide variety of soil types, including salt, sand and clay and very alkaline soils.. Tolerates Saline Soil. Soil PH: 7 - 8

Common uses
Common uses
Hedges, Butterfly Gardens, Bird Gardens

Maintenance
Maintenance
Subject to root rot unless drought stressed. Rabbit and deer often eat younger plants.

Propagation
Propagation?
For propagating by seed: Fresh seeds need dry storage for about 10 mos.; stored seeds, no treatment. (USDA Forest Service 1974; or 2.5 mos. stratification (Stidham et al. 1980).

Natural Setting
Site Type
Site Type
Areas with poor soils, often salty, alkaline or clay slopes, stabilized sand dunes, gravelly washes.

Climate
Climate
Annual Precipitation: 1.9" - 35.5", Summer Precipitation: 0.17" - 3.32", Coldest Month: 25.6" - 63.3", Hottest Month: 55.7" - 89.6", Humidity: 0.74" - 47.01", Elevation: -234" - 7983"

Alternative Names
Common Names: Fourwing Saltbush


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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