Our Plants

 
What's in Bloom?
 

There's always something to see at The Ruth Bancroft Garden! Pick up a "What's in Bloom" guide when you check in for your tour. You can click the thumbnail below to see what's blooming this month.

Click to enlarge:whats in bloom 2

Check out our Flickr Photostream as well! With photos organized by the month they were taken in, you can see what the Garden looks like throughout the year.

 
Purchasing Plants at The Ruth Bancroft Garden
 

Our dedicated volunteers propagate plants for sale in The Ruth Bancroft Nursery on an ongoing basis. Plants can be found outside the living wall at the south side of the Garden. You do not need to pay admission to the Garden to shop for plants.

You will find the best selection at the annual Spring and Fall Plant Sales, when we offer free admission to the Garden and Members-Only Previews and Silent Auctions. All our plants are competitively priced and grown slowly in exterior exposure with carefully blended soil mixes.

 

You may schedule an appointment to purchase plants and receive personalized dry-garden advice in the Nursery, by emailing our Nursery Manager. Bring your own pot to the appointment, select plants, and our Nursery Manager will create a custom container garden for you! $20 charge in addition to the cost of the plants.

 

June 2014 Plant Highlight: Dasylirion wheeleri

by Brian Kemble

 

Plants in the genus Dasylirion are notable for their hemispherical rosettes of stiffly radiating leaves. Most species have strap-like thin leaves with serrated edges, though a couple of kinds have needle-like leaves. They are a common sight in the dry parts of the U.S. Southwest and also in Mexico. The most widely cultivated species is Dasylirion wheeleri, native to southern Arizona and New Mexico, as well as the Mexican states of Chihuahua and Sonora.


Male Dasylirion wheeleri in flower
 

The blue-green leaves of Dasylirion wheeleri are thin rather than succulent, and their serrated margins mean that caution is in order when weeding around them. On a full-grown plant, the leaves are up to 4 feet long (1.2 m) and about ¾ inch to a little over 1 inch wide (2 to 3 cm). Over time, D. wheeleri develops a short trunk which can be as much as 5 feet tall (1.5 m), but this happens so slowly that it takes decades to become evident.

 

Male buds looking like little purple ears of corn
Open male flowers
 

Like all members of its genus, D. wheeleri is dioecious, which means that there are separate male and female plants. In either case, a stout stalk emerges from the rosette of leaves in summer, rising to a height of 10 to 20 feet (3 to 6 m), and attached to this are papery triangular bracts and many short floral branches with little “fingers” of tiny white flowers. Each of these “fingers” is only a few inches long (up to about 6 cm), but packed with many flowers. The female flower clusters are a little shorter and remain upright, while the longer male ones often bend to the side. Bees are attracted to the flowers, gathering pollen from male plants and nectar from female ones.


Bee visiting male flower
 
Plant Donations to The Garden

Many people express interest in donating plants to the Ruth Bancroft Garden. These include plants that have grown too large for their space, may no longer be desirable for the owner, mature landscape plants that are being removed to make way for new plantings, or were owned by friends or loved ones. Plant donations to the garden are most appreciated but must be approved by staff prior to drop-offs. Many donations are repotted in our nursery and sold at our plant sales to raise money to support the garden, while a choice few plants will be accessioned into our collection, depending on the species and whether it is represented in our collection.

If you are interested in donating plants, we request that you email digital images of the plants along with any identifying information you may have to our Garden Curator, Brian Kemble. Brian will be happy to determine which plants are appropriate for donation.

 
Garden Plant Information

The Ruth Bancroft Garden Tree Map

What's New in The Garden? Look here for interesting garden updates from the RBG gardeners' perspectives

 
Ruth's Tips
The Ruth Bancroft Garden Staff has been contributing "Ruth's Tips" articles to the Home & Garden section of Bay Area newspapers since 2005. We are currently in the process of scanning the printed articles to make them available online. Scanned articles are available here.
 
Plant Highlight Archives

March 2003: Aloe lutescens

May 2003: Beschorneria yuccoides

June 2003: Aloe porphyrostachys

July 2003: Tylecodon dinteri

August 2003: Agave potrerana

September 2003: Echinocactus grusonii

October 2003: Eucalyptus erythrocorys

December 2003: Tecoma stans

January 2004: Agave colimana

February 2004: Arctostaphylos 'Ruth Bancroft'

March 2004: Ribes speciosum

April 2004: Furcraea longaeva

May 2004: Echinopsis bruchii

June 2004: Hesperoyucca whipplei

July 2004: Agave potatorum

August 2004: Eriogonum giganteum

September 2004: Leuchtenbergia principis

October 2004: Osmanthus fragrans forma aurantiacus

December 2004: Aloe glauca

January 2005: Senecio articulatus

February 2005: Sedum dendroideum

March 2005: Bulbinella nutans

April 2005: Agave colorata

May 2005: Aeonium simsii

June 2005: Agave chrysoglossa

July 2005: Agave guadalajaranna

August 2005: Aloe tomentosa

September 2005: Brunsvigia josephinae

October 2005: Tecoma stans 'Gold Star'

November 2005: Furcraea selloa

December 2005: Aloe rubroviolacea

January 2006: Pandorea pandorana

February 2006: Cephalophyllum 'Red Spike'

March 2006: Sedum treleasei

April 2006: Yucca treculeana

May 2006: Puya berteroniana

July 2006: Echinopsis candicans

August 2006: Crassula falcata

September 2006: Echinocactus platyacanthus

October 2006: Ferocactus latispinus

November 2006: Agave Striata

December 2006: Euryops speciosissimus

February 2007: Correa 'Ivory Bells'

March 2007: Asphodelus aestivus

April 2007: Euphorbia caput-medusae

May 2007: Aloe brevifolia

June 2007: Romneya coulteri

July 2007: Nolina interrata

August 2007: Brachychiton discolor

September 2007: Tradescantia pallida

October 2007: Agave potatorum

November 2007: Aloe vacillans

December 2007: Euphorbia milii

January 2008: Senna artemisioides

February 2008: Aloe microstigma

July 2009: Agave bracteosa

August 2009: Agave parrasana

September 2009: Haworthia truncata

October 2009: Aloe greenii

November 2009: Colletia cruciata

December 2009: Veltheimia capensis

January 2010: Othonna capensis

February 2010: Aloe mutabilis

March 2010: Eucalyptus caesia

April 2010: Eucalyptus preissiana

May 2010: Lampranthus spectabilis

June 2010: Brachychiton populneus

July 2010: Parodia warasii

August 2010: Echeveria cante

Spetember 2010: Brahea armata

October 2010: Cleistocactus sepium

November 2010: Opuntia macrocentra

December 2010: Aloe arborescens

January 2011: Cephalophyllum stayneri

February 2011: Garrya elliptica

March 2011: Aloe affinis

April 2011: Thelocactus tulensis

May 2011: Agave chiapensis

June 2011: Yucca thompsoniana

July 2011: Nolina matapensis

August 2011: Ferocactus pottsii

September 2011: Beaucarnea recurvata

October 2011: Ochagavia litoralis

November 2011: Glottiphyllum linguiforme

December 2011: Agave geminiflora

January 2012: Crassula sarcocaulis

February 2012: Eucalyptus polyanthemos

March 2012: Stenocactus ochoterenanus

April 2012: Senecio fulgens

May 2012: Echeveria agavoides

June 2012: Gasteria polita

July 2012: Parkinsonia aculeata

August 2012: Agave nickelsiae

September 2012: Lessingia filaginifolia

Ocotber 2012: Washingtonia filifera

November 2012: Mammillaria geminispina

December 2012: Aloe ramosissima

January 2013: Correa pulchella 'Pink Eyre'

February 2013: Haworthia cooperi

March 2013: Aristolochia californica

April 2013: Euphorbia esculenta

May 2013: Echinopsis formosa

June 2013: Salvia canescens var. daghestanica

July 2013: Agave parryi

August 2013: Yucca schottii

September 2013: Mestoklema tuberosum

October 2013: Cleistocactus icosagonus

November 2013: Ruschia marianae

December 2013: Pedilanthus bracteatus

January 2014: Aloe petrophila

February 2014: Echeveria gigantea

March 2014: Gasteria bicolor

April 2014: Lampranthus multiradiatus

May 2014: Sedum clavatum

June 2014: Agave parviflora ssp. flexiflora

 

What's in Bloom?

Purchasing Plants

Plant Highlight

Plant Donations

Garden Plant Information

Ruth's Tips Article

Plant Highlight Archives

 
Membership

Our members get a discount on plant purchases! Become a member of the Garden or renew your membership.

DonateNow

 
Mission Statement
The mission of the Ruth Bancroft Garden, Inc. is to preserve this exceptional example of garden design and to continue to develop its collection of water-conserving plants for the education and enjoyment of the public.  
 
Grant Funders

The Ruth Bancroft Garden would like to recognize the following grant funders:

The Quest Foundation for funding our Education Coordinator’s position

The Mervyn L. Brenner Foundation and The Stanley Smith Horticultural Trust for funding our directional signs

The California Horticultural Society for funding towards our restoration projects

The Bonita Garden Clubfor funding restoration and education projects

 

 
 
 
The Ruth Bancroft Garden GardenConservancy