Tag Archives: Arctostaphylos nummularia

Plant of the day: glossyleaf manzanita

Another manzanita to follow on the heels of yesterday’s. Glossyleaf manzanita (Arctostaphylos sensitiva, formerly known as A. nummularia) is a beautiful plant. Small, glossy leaves grow densely along slim branches that are often conspicuously covered in long pale hair. This is the only manzanita in the area to have only 4 petals, and the white lantern-shaped flowers have a paler patch at their base, so the flesh of the petal seems nearly translucent where it joins the stem.

Glossyleaf manzanita is also called shatterberry, because its fruits break into pieces while still on the plant. According to the Marin flora, the long berries look so unlike other (round) manzanita fruits that it was initially thought to be in a different genus entirely.

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