Many people favor cultivated ornamentals over natives because they perceive natives to be delicate and difficult to transplant. If there was one native plant to completely explode that notion, it would be oceanspray. This plant is toughness incarnate. Happy in sun or shade, wet or dry, oceanspray is one of the hardest native plants to kill, try as you might. As an added bonus, it’s also a relatively fast growing plant, especially in sunny spots, so buying a 1 gallon oceanspray can be a great solution for filling a hole in your landscape.
In late spring, cascades of large, white to cream-colored flower plumes cover the entire plant, attracting butterflies and other pollinators. These flower clusters will eventually turn brown and remain on the plant through the winter. The dense structure of oceanspray makes it extremely valuable wildlife habitat, providing shelter and food (in the form of insects) for insectivorous birds such as chickadees and bushtits.
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