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Acalypha californica

2-3' tall / 3-5' wide


Copperleaf is a small, evergreen shrub that grows quickly and does not require much water. However, it is also able to withstand consistent irrigation. This plant is prized for its natural ability to remain compact, rounded and tidy where as most shrubs can become unruly. Not to mention, it usually stays under 2 feet. Not exactly a fan of cold weather. It will drop its leaves if it gets too cold and too moist, but should bounce back fine in the Spring.

In the garden, Copperleaf is used as a native box hedge. It is a pretty rare plant, not many nurseries grow it, but they should. Its not exactly elegant, but it is well behaved and definitely provides an Western landscape or arid dry scape aesthetic. The blooms aren’t bright or super showy, however it does add a touch of red to the landscape. Again, do not expect it to take place of a red flowering shrub, since the color is more dull and subtle. Takes well to hedge trimming and nipping. Do it as often as you need to, if you wish to keep a nice compact shrub.

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