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Pine Hill Flannelbush
(Fremontodendron decumbens )

Pine Hill flannelbush; Photo Copyright J.S. Peterson USDA NRCS NPDC
Photo Copyright J.S. Peterson USDA NRCS NPDC

Description: Pine Hill flannelbush is a 4 foot (1.3 meters) spreading shrub that produces large striking flowers, approximately 1.4 inches (3.5 cm) across, with distinctive leaves 1/2 inch (1-5 cm) long,  that have made close relatives of this species ornamental favorites. Hairs arranged in star-shaped groups cover the leaves and younger branches. Leaves are dark green with up to 5 to 7 rounded lobes. Flowers are light orange to reddish brown, in texture and very showy. Fruits are egg- shaped and very bristly.

Distribution: Pine Hill flannelbush is only known from the central portion of western Eldorado County in the vicinity of Pine Hill itself (near Rescue). BLM manages a 40 acre (16 hectare) parcel north of Pine Hill that supports this species.

Habitat: Live oak woodland often with a significant shrub component. Sonoma sage, Lemmon's ceanothus, and the rare species, Eldorado bedstraw, Layne's butterweed, Red Hills soaproot, and Eldorado mules' ears are among distinctive associates.

Flowering Period: April to July.

Similar Plants: Common flannelbush (Fremontodendron californicum) generally differs from Pine Hill flannelbush in growth form (the former taller than wide, the latter wider than tall) and flower color (the former with yellow flowers, the latter with orange).  However, flannelbush occurrences in Nevada and Yuba Counties that resemble Pine Hill flannelbush have been referred to as Fremontodendron californicum.)

Status: Federal Endangered, California State Rare, California Native Plant Society List 1B

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Field Office: Mother Lode

Last updated: 08-05-2010