Apache Plume Shrubs Are Showy, Native Western Favorites

Updated on April 21, 2018
Casey White profile image

Dorothy is a former newspaper reporter and the author of several books. Michael is a professional landscape/nature photographer.

Apache Plume Flower in Bloom

The Apache plume flowering at its most beautiful best.  This is an ever-blooming flower that has five showy white petals.
The Apache plume flowering at its most beautiful best. This is an ever-blooming flower that has five showy white petals. | Source

A Native Plant in the Southwest

Native to the Southwest, the Apache plume (Fallugia paradoxa) is a small deciduous to semi-evergreen shrub with shredded bark and beautiful white flowers, such as the ones pictured within this article. The plant derives its common name from the long, feathery plumes and is grown throughout all four Southwestern deserts, including the Sonoran, Mojave, Chihuahuan, and the Great Basin. You can find them growing from southeastern California and southern Nevada all the way to southern Colorado and west Texas. We have them here in New Mexico, where the photographs were taken, and they can also be found in Arizona and the northern part of Mexico. They grow on dry, rocky slopes, arroyos, and pinyon-juniper woodlands at elevations from 3,000 to 8,000 feet.

Apache plume flowers are in the rose family.

Pink, Silky Plumed Seed Heads

These white flowers are their most gorgeous when the pink, silky plumed seed heads are formed, covering the tips of the branches of the shrub.
These white flowers are their most gorgeous when the pink, silky plumed seed heads are formed, covering the tips of the branches of the shrub. | Source

Sowing Seeds

In order to grow Apache plume plants from seeds, you need to collect them in the fall. They need to be chilled for about three months before they are sown in the early spring.

The Apache plume grows up to about six feet tall with an equal spread width, so be sure to plant it in a location where it can reach its full potential. Always be aware of surrounding structures and/or other plants. And, don't forget that the Apache plume shrub should always be planted where it can receive lots of sunshine (preferably full sun).

If you are planting this shrub as a part of your landscape, you should plant it on the south or western part of your yard, in whichever area receives the most sun and gets the hottest in the summertime. The Apache plume requires sandy, extremely well-drained soil in order to survive and it won't tolerate growing in an area that stands in water.

Note: If you prefer, you can buy mature plants in containers at local Southwest nurseries. They are considered a "waterwise" plant (plants that are naturally drought resistant and require little watering once established) and are usually found in a section with other similar plants.

Caring for Newly Planted Apache Plume

Watering - Weekly watering is sufficient for newly-planted Apache plumes, but when the plant becomes established you can reduce watering to about once a month in the summertime and whenever there is a drought. Otherwise, watering is not necessary. When the plant is established, you will begin to see new leaves and branches begin to grow.

Fertilizing - In the early spring when new leaves start to grow, you will need to fertilize your Apache plume by spreading about a tablespoon of 10-10-10 slow-release fertilizer (nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium) around the outside perimeter of the plant. Apache plumes need to be fertilized in the early spring when the new leaves begin to grow. Mix the fertilizer with a rake into the soil about 2-3 inches deep, then water it in.

Pruning - Pruning needs to be done twice a year - in the late winter when the plant is dormant and in the early summer after it blooms. In the winter, cut off any broken or diseased stems, making each cut slightly above a growth node (or bud). Don't prune, however, any more than about a third of the plant, being careful to take the older stems first. After the plant blooms in the summertime, trim any gangly or long stems to keep the shrub shaped nicely.

You can create a low-watering area of your landscape by planting other drought-tolerate plants close to your Apache plume shrubs.

The Many Advantages of Apache Plume

  • Apache plume shrubbery and flowers are deer and rabbit resistant, but they do attract butterflies and birds.
  • A native evergreen plant, it is very low maintenance.
  • They are perfect for a rock garden and are excellent for erosion control.
  • They are often used for hedges and screens when separation/privacy is needed.
  • It is an ever-blooming shrub.

Shelter for Wildlife

The Apache plume shrub provides shelter for wildlife and the seeds are extremely attractive to birds in the area. You should also begin to see many more butterflies if you plant Apache plume shrubs as a part of your landscape.

Rank - Scientific Name - Common Name

  • Kingdom - Plantae – Plants
  • Subkingdom - Tracheobionta – Vascular plants
  • Superdivision - Spermatophyta – Seed plants
  • Division - Magnoliophyta – Flowering plants
  • Class - Magnoliopsida – Dicotyledons
  • Subclass - Rosidae
  • Order - Rosales
  • Family - Rosaceae – Rose family
  • Genus/Species - Fallugia Paradoxa – Apache plume

This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.

© 2018 Mike and Dorothy McKenney


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, dengarden.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://dengarden.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)