By Lucy Warren, Master Gardener and Forever Balboa Park Trustee

If you’re interested in expanding your own garden, January is the perfect time to plant California native plants. Our recent rains are just what they like to get their roots started. While all native plants are excellent options, buckwheats (Eriogonum) are great drought-tolerant, shrubby perennial plants that add texture to any garden. All varieties are green year-round, have a long bloom cycle, and attract native birds and pollinators.

Even with recent rain, one of the most important things to do for all native plants is to water them right after planting. And not just a dribble. Add gallons to not only water the plant but to settle the roots and force out any air pockets. Happy planting!

You can find red buckwheat (Eriogonum grande var. rubescens) in Balboa Park in the “wing” of the bird in Bird Park.