A while back, I posted about this book. At that time, I didn’t have the book yet. I have it now, and it is a wonderful read, filled with great information. Some of it made me very homesick, like the entry for Hairy Manzanita (Arctostaphylos columbiana). The manzanita that grew in Idyllwild, Ca., is a different Arctostaphylos, but those differences are minor, and manzanita has always been used by Indigenous peoples in various ways. I love every single thing about manzanitas, and it makes me ache a little, just thinking about them. Patricia’s book includes a whole lot of plants I was not familiar with, and was not at all familiar with Indigenous uses of them. I learned a lot, and was delighted over and over again, like when I was viewing a photo of an older Indian woman wearing a pine nut apron.

The writing flows like water, and this isn’t just a story told, this is a text which provides learning, and a reference to all the wonders around us. You can order the book here, and I highly recommend it.


  1. says


    I love the Manzanitas we have here in Az.

    I don’t know anyone who doesn’t fall in love with Manzanitas! They are so beautiful.

  2. Onamission5 says

    Manzanitas! *sniff*

    My favorite thing about them as a kid was watching the trails of wee ants traverse in, and out, and in again, harvesting nectar from equally wee pink blossoms.

    There’s a few things that can bring a wave of homesickness, the smell of leopard lilies is one, any mention of manzanita is another.

  3. says


    any mention of manzanita is another.

    Yep. Makes me want to be surrounded by them again. I’ve never known anyone to be negative or indifferent to Manzanita. I’m sure there are some people somewhere who are, but I don’t want to know about it.

  4. Patricia Phillips says

    Thanks Caine. I’ve had fun researching all this for years. It is funny, as a kid I didn’t have a deep interest in plants. It grew over time. My appreciation of our ‘green friends’ has grown too.

    As for manzanitas…on the OR coast there are two species of ‘manzanita’ -- the hairy manzanita (common in places on the dunes) and kinnikinnick -- a ground hugging manzanita. I live in CA now and we have so many species of manzanita! It is amazing. Some species also interbreed, making identification quite tricky. They are hardy plants, thriving in dryer climates.

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