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Description

Sticky monkey flower gets its common name from its long and narrow leaves with surfaces coated in a sticky resin. It is a delightful small evergreen shrub growing 2-4 ft. tall that becomes totally covered with colorful tubular orange flowers. Cultivars available from different nurseries and garden centers offer plants with white, yellow, orange and red flowers.

Sticky monkey flower grows throughout California in sage scrub, chaparral and oak woodland plant communities on rocky slopes, plains and disturbed areas. Within this range it varies in growth habit and flower color, and is highly adapted to heat, sun and summer drought conditions. It is widely planted in restoration projects as well as native and residential gardens throughout the Inland Empire. Its easy to grow and performs best in ornamental gardens for 3-5 years before needing to be replaced.

Water Needs

Sticky monkey flower is highly adapted to sunny garden locations on well drained soils and with low amounts of supplemental water during summer. 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 indicated by an asterisk (*) when winter rains can provide sufficient moisture and irrigation is not needed. The high and low range of moisture indicates this plant can grow with varying amounts of water; more water in the spring will result in a longer and more intense flowering season.

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: Perennial, Native
Foliage Character: Evergreen
Habit: Mounding
Growth Rate: Moderate
Height: 2 ft. - 3 ft.
Width: 2 ft. - 3 ft.
Water Needs: Low 1
Foliage Color: Medium green
Flower Color: Orange
Flower Season: Spring
Soil Adaptations: Well-draining soil, Clay
Exposure Adaptations: Heat, Drought, All day sun
Function: Wildlife value, Slopes, Rock gardens, Restoration, Hummingbird plant, Flowering accent plant, Container plant, California native, Banks, Attracts butterflies, Small spaces

Maintenance

Best grown in part shade in inland gardens. Pinch when young to promote a more shrub-like form. Remove entire flower stalks once they are finished blooming. Cut back after blooming, but do not cut into old wood below the lowest sets of leaves, or the plant will most likely not grow back (3). Sticky monkey flower can also be pinched back (lightly trimmed) in spring before new growth if desired to clean up a bit and promote a bushier form (5).

References

Associations

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