CPC Plant Profile: Santa Barbara Ceanothus
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Plant Profile

Santa Barbara Ceanothus (Ceanothus impressus)

Ceanothus impressus var. impressus—Santa Barbara ceanothus. Restricted to western Santa Barbara County. One of the parents of several of the most popular ceanothus hybrids. Lives up to it’s Latin name in the truly impressive selection C. impressus ‘Vandenberg’. . Photographed with Olympus Pen E-PL1 with Canon 100 mm FD macro lens. Focus Stacking of 11 images with Zerene Stacker software. Plant is at Regional Parks Botanic Garden located in Tilden Regional Park near Berkeley, CA. Photo Credit: © 2014 John Rusk
  • Global Rank: G2 - Imperiled
  • Legal Status: N/A
  • Family: Rhamnaceae
  • State: CA
  • Nature Serve ID: 132820
  • Date Inducted in National Collection:

The Santa Barbara Ceanothus is a chaparral shrub that’s endemic to Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties in California. Within the chaparral communities, Ceanothus impressus is found growing in sandy sediment from the inland areas that are predominantly sandstone to the coastal sand dunes within maritime chaparral. Within these habitat preferences, C. impressus is known to favor areas that were historically impacted by wildfire and has commonly been found to coexist with local Manzanita species including Arctostaphylos tomentosa (Woolyleaf Manzanita). Though this species is currently unranked in the state of California, the global conservation status of this species is Imperiled.

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Taxon Ceanothus impressus
Authority Trel.
Family Rhamnaceae
CPC Number 9007
ITIS 28477
Common Names Santa Barbara Ceanothus
Associated Scientific Names Ceanothus impressus | Ceanothus impressus var. impressus | Ceanothus impressus var. nipomensis
Distribution C. impressus is endemic to Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties. 
State Rank
State State Rank
California SNR

Ceanothus impressus is a member of the chaparral community that prefers sandy mesa or sand dunes. Other potential growing sites includes areas that had historically been impacted by wildfires. 

Ecological Relationships

C. impressus shares a beneficial relationship with pollinating bees and butterflies including Pale Swallowtails (Papilio eurymedon) and Pacuvius Duskywings (Erynnis pacuvius). 

Common Name Name in Text Association Type Source InteractionID
Lead Institution State Reintroduction Type Year of First Outplanting

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