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Aristolochia californica

California Dutchman’s Pipe
Deciduous, Vines


Twining vines noted for curiously shaped flowers in rather sober colors; they resemble curved pipes with flared bowls or birds with bent necks. Vigorous growers; thin out unwanted growth in late dormant season or wait until after bloom. If plant is too thick and tangled for selective thinning, cut it to the ground before spring growth begins.

Aristolochia californica

Native to Coast ranges and Sierra Nevada foothills of Northern California. Will cover an 8- by 12-ft. screen with some training or climb by long, thin shoots 10–16 ft. into any nearby tree without harming it. Flower display comes before leafout in winter or early spring; pendulous, 1-in.-long blooms are cream colored with red-purple veins. Bright green, heart-shaped leaves to 5 in. long. Interesting and useful where many less hardy vines would freeze. Sometimes used as a groundcover. Grows from seed. Accepts any soil.

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