Apache Plume in the Landscape


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    Apache Plume in the Landscape


    Heidi Kratsch, Extension Ornamental Horticulture Specialist
    Graham Hunter, Research Associate, Center for Water Efficient Landscaping

    January 2009 | HG/Native Plants/2009-01pr

    Fallugia paradoxa

    Apache plume

    Apache plume seed headsDescription: Apache plume is an evergreen shrub that can reach five feet tall and wide in a landscape setting.

    This plant’s most distinguishing and attractive feature is the feathery, red turning-pink seedhead that emerges after the white rose-like, five-petaled flower fades.

    In the same family as Mexican cliffrose, both species produce similar deeply lobed small leaves; Apache plume’s leaves are lighter green and more finely textured.

    The bark becomes red and exfoliating with age. Apache plume is a dioecious species, requiring both male and female plants to produce viable seed.





    Cultural Requirements

    Native Habitat                                              Occurs on dry slopes and in washes
    throughout the Southwest. Elevation:
    3,500 - 8,000 feet
    Soil Well-drained, prefers gravelly low
    fertility soils
    Cold Tolerance USDA Zones 4-10
    Drought Tolerance High; can survive in most conditions
    with no supplemental water once
    Salt Tolerance Low
    Sun/Shade Preference Full sun
    Transplanting Transplant seedlings. Mature plants
    are more difficult, due to branching
    tap root
    Propagation From seed or stem cuttings
    Maintenance Prune in late spring after bloom; tolerates shearing
    Pest Problems    Browsed by deer

    Landscape Value

    Use in the Landscape                                                   Specimen, background, soil stabilization, wildlife protection       
    Foliage Fine-textured, 3-5 lobed, one-half inch in length; evergreen
    Inflorescence Rose-like, white with yellow centers

    apache plume seasonal color chart

    Fruit (achene)                                                                               Each seedhead consists of many achenes, each attached to a feathery tail
    Form Broad, spreading; tighter with regular shearing
    Texture Fine
    Ultimate Size 5-6 feet
    Rate of Growth Fast
    Plant Community Pinyon-juniper, cool desert shrub, semi-riparian

    Check your local plant nursery for availability

    Cultivars None of ornamental value


    Sow dry or pre-soaked seed directly into container. No cold-stratification is required. Seeds should be covered
    lightly with perlite or vermiculite to ensure contact with soil. Seed germinates in 10 to 20 days. Seedlings are
    very susceptible to root rot. Once they have their true leaves, water thoroughly only when the surface of the soil has started to dry out. Transplant as soon as they are well rooted.

    Additional Photo

    apache plume shrub









    Mee, W., J. Barnes, R. Kjelgren, R. Sutton, T. Cerny, and C. Johnson. 2003. Waterwise: Native Plants for Intermountain Landscapes. Utah State University Press, Logan, UT.

    USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service. 2008. Plants database.

    Dreesen, D. 2003. Propagation protocol for production of container Fallugia paradoxa plants; USDA NRCS -
    Los Lunas Plant Materials Center, Los Lunas, New Mexico. In: Native Plant Network. URL:
    http://www.nativeplantnetwork.org (accessed 2 January 2009). Moscow (ID): University of Idaho, College of
    Natural Resources, Forest Research Nursery. (this site is no longer available). 

    This fact sheet belongs to a series of fact sheets about Intermountain West native trees, shrubs, perennials, and
    grasses called “Water-wise and Native Plants.” 

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