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Description

Pigeon Point coyote brush is a cutting grown cultivar of Baccharis pilularis with a low and spreading growth habit that makes it highly suited for use as a ground cover. It is an evergreen shrub that has bright to medium green rounded leaves and flexible stems. It matures around 18-24 in. high and 6-9 ft. wide, and will drape gracefully on banks and over planter walls. The flowers are cream-white and not showy.

Pigeon Point coyote brush is adapted to both light and heavy soil conditions, full sun and low amounts of summer water. It has proven to be one of the best evergreen ground covers for medium to large parkways, slopes and perimeter garden spaces. As it matures it will develop woody stems and a mounding habit. The mounding habit and the woody stems can be revitalized by pruning the stems back to the ground in mid winter every 4-5 years; the next spring growth cycle is usually very robust.

Water Needs

Pigeon point coyote brush is well adapted to all parts of the Inland Empire with normal winter rains and low amounts of summer irrigation. The chart shown below provides a recommended baseline guide to the monthly irrigation schedule and volume of supplemental water needed to maintain healthy growth throughout the average year. It should be noted there are several months marked by an asterisk (*) when winter rains can provide sufficient moisture and irrigation is not needed. The high and low range of moisture indicates it can grow with varying amounts of water; more supplemental water commonly results in a longer growing season and spreading more rapidly.

Irrigation Schedule and Graph

Low Water Use Plants

Irrigation Schedule 1

  Jan* Feb* Mar* Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov* Dec*
Runs per Month 0x to 2x 0x to 2x 0x to 2x 1x 1x 1x 1x 1x 1x 1x 0x to 2x 0x to 2x
Inches per Run 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1"
 
Inches per Month 0" to 2" 0" to 2" 0" to 2" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 0" to 2" 0" to 2"

Range of supplemental summer water: 7"
Range of supplemental winter water: 0"-10"

 
0"-2"
0"-2"
0"-2"
1"
1"
1"
1"
1"
1"
1"
0"-2"
0"-2"
  Jan* Feb* Mar* Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov* Dec*
For more information on how to use this Irrigation Schedule and Graph, click here.

Plant Properties

Plant Type: Shrub, Ground cover
Foliage Character: Evergreen
Habit: Spreading, Mounding
Growth Rate: Moderate
Height: 18 in. - 24 in.
Width: 6 ft. - 9 ft.
Water Needs: Low 1
Foliage Color: Medium green
Flower Color: Insignificant
Flower Season: Summer, Spring
Soil Adaptations: Well-draining soil, Silt, Sand, Clay
Exposure Adaptations: Wind, Heat, Fog, Coastal salt air, Aridity, All day sun
Function: Wildlife value, Slopes, Parks and open space, Foliage accent plant, Banks, Attracts butterflies

Maintenance

Prune by heading back as much of the new-ish growth as desired in May or cut back as needed mid-winter (January - February) prior to spring growth (1). Every number of years, if looking like it needs to be reinvigorated, Baccharis can be "coppiced" by cutting all the way to the ground to promote new shoots and full regrowth (2). Coyote brush is adaptable to pruning. It can be cut back or sheared like a hedge to promote a denser plant. With some work most Baccharis pilularis or pilularis hybrids can be maintained as a formal hedge. Can be cut back hard or mowed every 3-5 years to keep as a more manageable groundcover (3). These plants grow wide. It is tempting to space them closer together when planting, but doing so (if plants are not removed as necessary as they grow in, which never ends up happening) will lead to them growing over each other and becoming taller than desired in many situations (S).

References

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