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Arboretum Spotlight: Funny name, pretty plant

Bladderpod is a California native with a lot to offer in water-wise gardens.
Bladderpod is a California native with a lot to offer in water-wise gardens.

This is one part in a weekly series featuring the UC Davis Arboretum’s “40 Plants You (Probably) Have Never Heard of – But Will Love,” 40 can’t-fail, easy-care, low-water plants well adapted to our region but hard to find.

Bladderpod

Isomeris arborea

Size: 3 to 4 feet.

Bloom season: Yellow flowers year round.

Exposure: Full sun.

Pruning needs: Needs shaping when young.

Water needs: Very low; once established, water deeply once a month.

Snapshot: Bladderpod grows in dry desert washes and along roadsides up to 4,000 feet in elevation. Native to Southern California, this dense, evergreen shrub sports unusual yellow flowers year round. Those blooms are followed by oval green fruit that, when dry, resemble puffy beige paper lanterns. It’s also deer resistant.

For more on “40 Plants,” click on arboretum.ucdavis.edu.

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