Epilobium californica 'Bowman'

Common Name: hummingbird's trumpet 
Type: Herbaceous perennial
Family: Onagraceae
Zone: 8 to 10
Height: 1.50 to 2.00 feet
Spread: 1.50 to 2.00 feet
Bloom Time: July to frost
Bloom Description: Red
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Low
Flower: Showy
Attracts: Hummingbirds
Tolerate: Deer, Drought, Clay Soil, Dry Soil, Shallow-Rocky Soil


Easily grown in most soil types in full sun to part shade. Very adaptable. In hot, full sun situations, this plant does best if some water is provided. Tolerates drought once established. Hardy from Zones 8-10. A single, heavy pruning once a year in the winter will encourage shorter, bushier growth and increase floral display.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Epilobium californica, commonly called hummingbird's trumpet, is an evergreen subshrub or woody perennial native to arid, rocky, mountainous areas of the southwestern United States, as well as wetter, coastal areas in California. These plants can reach 2.5-3' tall and 3-4' wide, with upright, slender, highly-branched stems. The leaves are small and narrow, lance-shaped to ovate, grey-green in color, and slightly hairy. Flowering stalks emerge in summer, and blooming continues into fall. The tubular flowers are bright coral-red and very attractive to hummingbirds.

The genus name Epilobium comes from the Greek "epi" meaning upon and "lobos" meaning pod or capsule. The petals of flowers in this genus are situated above the ovary.

The specific epithet californica refers to the native range of this species.

The common name hummingbird's trumpet refers to both the shape of the flower and this plant's attractiveness to hummingbirds.

'Bowman' is an upright cultivar that can reach 2' tall with a 2' spread. It was selected by Ed Carman from the garden of Bob Bowman, who hybridized native California fuchsias at the University of California, Davis.


No major disease or pest issues reported. This plant is deer resistant.


Useful for xeriscaping, rock gardens, native gardens, or formal mixed shrub borders.