Ericameria ericoides (Less.) Jepson

Mock Heather
Asteraceae (Sunflower Family)


Mock heather is a broad, compact, much-branched shrub growing 1' to 3-1/2' tall. The herbage is resinous, the many leaves alternate, linear, 1/8" to 3/8" long and almost tubular with dense fascicles of small leaves in the leaf axils.  The radiate flower heads are in terminal clusters with turbinate involucres about 1/4" high, each of which has bracts or phyllaries that are imbricate in 3-4 series, the outer lanceolate and acuminate and the inner narrow-oblong and acute, tomentose-ciliate, and usually with a small green spine at the tip.  There are 2-6 yellow ray flowers and 8-14 disk flowers.  The fruit is a cylindric, striate, glabrous to ± silvery-hairy achene with a pappus of many whitish to tan hair-like bristles.  Mock heather is fairly common on dunes and sandy areas near the coast from Los Angeles Co. to central California, blooming from August to November.  Jepson says that this species hybridizes with Chrysothamnus nauseosus.  These pictures were taken at Point Dume.

Click here for name derivations: 1) Ericameria 2) ericoides.
Pronunciation: er-ik-a-MER-ee-a er-i-KO-i-dees.
Click here for Botanical Term Meanings.