Tracy’s mistmaiden

Jimmy Candou
3 min readMay 1, 2023

A diminutive coastal plant surprisingly suitable for rock gardens

Latin Name: Romanzoffia tracyi
Common Name(s): Tracy’s Mistmaiden
Family: Boraginaceae
Size: a small plant, reaching a maximum height of about 5". Tends to be shorter in full sun. Establishes colonies by spreading tubers.
Life Cycle: Perennial
Distribution: Northern California up to the very southern tip of Vancouver Island.
Light Requirements: Full sun, might appreciate some shade inland
USDA Zone: Unknown, given the habitat of rocky ocean bluffs it probably can handle a fair amount of heat and drought in the summer but might not respond well to being frozen solid. My guess would be 7–9.
Drought Tolerance: Needs to be seasonally moist, but can go dormant during dry months thus increasing the drought tolerance.
Fire Risk: Not relevant, as the plant is tiny and usually dormant during the months of greatest fire risk.

Spring walks along the Oregon coast often reveal an ephemeral and delicate plant life that often disappears in the heat of summer, perhaps best represented by Tracy’s Mistmaiden, a delicately tiny member of the Waterleaf family that grows in the harsh coastal environment. Often…

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Jimmy Candou

A writer living in the PNW who just wants to tend to his garden.