Carpenteria californica / /, the sole species in the genus Carpenteria, is a flowering evergreen shrub native to California. It is closely related to the genus Philadelphus. Common names include tree anemone and bush anemone.
It is a rare species, endemic to only seven sites in Fresno and Madera Counties, where it grows in chaparral between 340–1,340 m (1,115–4,396 ft) altitude between the San Joaquin and King rivers. It is well adapted to wildfire, reproducing by stump sprouts after burning; natural seedlings are rare.
It grows to 1–3 m (3 ft 3 in–9 ft 10 in) tall, with flaky bark on older stems. The leaves are opposite, lanceolate, 4–10 cm long and 1-2.5 cm broad, glossy green above, blue-green to whitish and downy beneath. The flowers are 3–7 cm diameter, with 5-8 pure white petals and a cluster of yellow stamens; flowering is from late spring to mid summer. The fruit is a leathery capsule 6–12 mm diameter, containing numerous seeds.
It is a popular ornamental plant in gardens with Mediterranean climates, grown for its decorative flowers; it is now much more common in cultivation than in the wild. Several cultivars have been selected, including 'Bodnant', a cold-tolerant cultivar hardy to −15 °C (5 °F) in the British Isles, and 'Ladham's' with large flowers.
- Sunset Western Garden Book, 1995:606–607
- Glenn R. Conrad, ed.: A Dictionary of Louisiana Biography, Vol. I, A to M, The Louisiana Historical Association, New Orleans, La., 1988, pp. 24, 153-154, 303. 557.
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