How to Grow Abronia

Abronia - sand verbena
Sand Verbena, Abronia villosa

Abronia–commonly called sand verbena–is a trailing perennial or annual that bears dense, verbena-like round-topped clusters that can be pink, rose-pink, or purple. Abronia resembles verbena but is not a true verbena.

Abronia is a perennial in mild-winter regions of the Western United States where it is a native. It can be grown as an annual where winters are cold.

Low-growing Abronia is an effective edging for walkways and borders. Because it trails, Abronia can be used in hanging baskets or window boxes or as a potted plant near the edge of balconies. Abronia can be grown in seaside gardens in sandy and dry soil.

Abronia is a genus of about 35 species native to Arizona, Nevada, Southern California, and Baja California.

Get to Know Abronia

  • Plant type: Herbaceous annuals and perennials
  • Growing zones and range: Zones 8-10
  • Hardiness: Hardy to Zone 8
  • Height and width: 2 to 6 inches (5-15cm) tall and 4 to 6 inches (10-15cm) wide
  • Foliage: Mid- to dark green ovate to ovate-linear freshy leaves
  • Flowers: Fragrant verbena-like flower clusters about 2-inches across, individual flowers are 1/2 inch across
  • Bloom time: Summer
  • Uses: Grow in front of a border or trailing in a rock garden; hanging basket, window box
  • Common name: Sand verbea
  • Botanical name: Abronia
  • Family name: Nyctaginaceae
  • Origin: Western North America, coastal and desert regions
Sand Verbena, Abronia villosa

Where to Plant Abronia

  • Plant Abronia in full sun.
  • Grow Abronia in moderately fertile, sandy soil.
  • Abronia can take plenty of sunshine and so is a good choice for rock gardens or seaside gardens. It grows well in light, sandy, rather dry soil.

When to Plant Abronia

  • Set container-grown Abronia in the garden in spring after the last frost.
  • Sow seeds outdoors after the last frost in spring or start seeds indoors 6 weeks before the last frost.

Planting and Spacing Abronia

  • Space Abronia 6 to 9 inches (15-23cm) apart.

How to Water and Feed Abronia

  • Water Abronia moderately during the growing season; water sparingly in winter.
  • Fertilize Abronia with a balanced liquid fertilizer in spring.

Abronia Care

  • Grow Abronia as an annual where winters are harsh.

Abronia Pests and Diseases

  • Downy mildew, rust, and leaf spot can occur.

Abronia Propagation

  • Sow Abronia seeds indoors in spring about six weeks before the last frost is due.
  • In dry regions, in Zones 9-10, seeds can be sown outdoors in fall

Abronia Varieties to Grow

  • Abronia villosa. Trailing annual grows to 2 inches tall and 6 inches wide with ascending mid to dark green leaves; round,fragrant, purple to rose-pink flowers in dense verbena-like heads.
  • A. umbellata. Grows to 6 inches tall; dense, round-topped flwoer clusters about 2 inches across.

Perennial Adonis

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