Kalmiopsis Kalmiopsis leachiana

👤 Non-toxic to humans
🐾 Non-toxic to pets
🌸 Blooming
🍪 Not edible
‍🌱 Hard-care


Kalmiopsis leachiana, commonly known as Kalmiopsis, is a visually distinct and captivating plant. It is best recognized for its clusters of small, vibrant pink or lavender flowers that have a distinctive and alluring shape. The petals are small and delicate, often looking crinkled or wavy, which gives the flowers a unique texture and depth. These pretty blossoms appear in the spring and summer, attracting numerous pollinators to the garden with their bright colors and sweet fragrance. The leaves of the Kalmiopsis are equally attractive. They are typically evergreen, providing year-round interest, with a leathery texture and a dark green color that sometimes takes on a bluish or grayish hue. The shape of the leaves can be oval or elliptical, and they are often arranged in opposing pairs along the stems. This foliage stands out among other garden plants due to its glossy surface, which can catch the light and produce a subtle shimmer. The stems of this compact shrub are slender and may have a reddish-brown tinge, contrasting nicely with the green of the leaves and the bright flowers. The overall form of Kalmiopsis leachiana is dense and rounded, with a bushy appearance that makes it excellent for use in rock gardens or as a part of natural landscaping designs. Its striking appearance, combined with its floral and foliar attributes, makes it a distinctive choice for gardeners looking to create a point of interest in their outdoor spaces.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Family


    • Synonyms

      Kalmiopsis, Leach's Kalmiopsis, Oregon Kalmiopsis

    • Common names

      Kalmiopsis leachiana

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      Kalmiopsis is not widely known for its toxicity to humans. There's limited information about the plant causing poisoning when ingested. While it may not be commonly reported to cause serious harm, it's always advisable to avoid eating any part of plants that are not known to be edible or haven't been verified as safe by qualified professionals. If someone does ingest Kalmiopsis and experiences negative symptoms, it would be prudent to seek medical attention. In general, symptoms of plant poisoning can include gastrointestinal upset, vomiting, diarrhea, allergic reactions, or other adverse effects.

    • To pets

      Kalmiopsis is not widely documented to be toxic to pets. However, the lack of specific information on its toxicity does not necessarily guarantee safety, and it's generally recommended to prevent pets from ingesting plants that are not confirmed to be non-toxic. If a pet does consume Kalmiopsis and exhibits signs of distress such as vomiting, diarrhea, excessive drooling, or changes in behavior, contacting a veterinarian would be important for proper care and treatment. It is always best to err on the side of caution and keep pets away from plants of unknown edibility.

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle


    • Foliage type


    • Color of leaves


    • Flower color


    • Height

      2 feet (0.61 meters)

    • Spread

      3 feet (0.91 meters)

    • Plant type


    • Hardiness zones


    • Native area

      North America


  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Ecosystem support: Kalmiopsis leachiana provides habitat and food for various insects and animals native to its environment.
    • Aesthetic Value: With its small pink flowers, it adds natural beauty to gardens and landscapes where it is used as an ornamental plant.
    • Conservation Importance: Being endemic to Oregon, it has significance for local biodiversity and conservation efforts.
    • Drought Tolerance: Adapted to survive in its native habitat with limited water, making it a suitable choice for drought-resistant landscaping.
    • Pollinator Attraction: Flowers attract pollinators such as bees and butterflies, aiding in the pollination of nearby plants.

  • medicalMedical Properties

    This plant is not used for medical purposes.

  • windAir-purifying Qualities

    This plant is not specifically known for air purifying qualities.

  • leavesOther Uses

    • Garden Ornamentation: Due to its rare and distinctive appearance, Kalmiopsis leachiana is often used to add unique visual interest in rock gardens and specialized botanical collections.
    • Conservation Education: This plant is sometimes utilized by educational programs to exemplify the importance of species conservation, as it is native to a limited area in Oregon and faces environmental threats.
    • Botanical Research: Kalmiopsis leachiana serves as a subject for botanical studies, especially in understanding evolutionary adaptations in harsh environments due to its survival in serpentine soils.
    • Eco-tourism Attraction: The plant’s rarity and the unique ecosystem it thrives in can attract eco-tourists, particularly to the Kalmiopsis Wilderness for which it is named.
    • Genetic Study: Researchers may use Kalmiopsis leachiana in genetic studies to investigate its resilience and unique adaptations to its environment.
    • Artistic Inspiration: The unusual beauty of Kalmiopsis leachiana can inspire artists and photographers who capture the diversity of plant life.
    • Habitat Restoration: Kalmiopsis leachiana can be used in habitat restoration projects within its native range to promote biodiversity and ecological balance.
    • Cultural Significance: The plant has significance to local cultures and indigenous people who have historical ties to the regions where the plant grows naturally.
    • Soil Erosion Control: Because of its ability to thrive in rocky, unstable soils, Kalmiopsis leachiana might be useful in controlling soil erosion in similar terrains.
    • Specialized Horticulture: The challenging nature of growing Kalmiopsis leachiana interests some horticulturists who specialize in cultivating difficult-to-grow plants.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    The Kalmiopsis is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    The Kalmiopsis is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Endurance: Kalmiopsis leachiana, commonly known as Kalmiopsis, is native to the harsh, serpentine soils of the Kalmiopsis Wilderness, thriving where other plants might struggle, symbolizing the ability to endure challenging conditions and persevere.
    • Rarity and Uniqueness: This plant is quite rare and has a very limited range, making it a symbol of uniqueness and the beauty of rare phenomena in nature.
    • Adaptation: The Kalmiopsis exhibits remarkable adaptation to its environment, representing the trait of adaptability in life and the capacity to thrive in varied circumstances.
    • Survival: As a survivor of the Biscuit Fire in 2002, this plant represents resilience and the ability to recover from adversity.

Every 1-2 weeks
2500 - 10000 Lux
Every 2-3 years
Spring-early summer
Not needed
  • water dropWater

    The Oregon Myrtle, also known as Kalmiopsis leachiana, prefers steady moisture without being waterlogged. It's best to water this plant deeply once a week, allowing the soil to become somewhat dry between waterings. Provide about one to two gallons of water each week, depending on the size of the plant and environmental conditions. Adjust the amount during hot, dry periods by increasing the frequency to twice a week, ensuring the plant receives sufficient hydration.

  • sunLight

    The Oregon Myrtle thrives in bright, indirect light or partial shade. It should be placed in a spot where it can receive filtered sunlight, as direct afternoon sun can be too intense and may scorch the delicate leaves. Morning light or dappled shade under taller plants provides an ideal lighting condition for this species.

  • thermometerTemperature

    For Oregon Myrtle, the ideal temperature range lies between 60°F to 75°F. This plant can handle minimum temperatures down to around 20°F, but it's important to protect it from frost. Always avoid placing the Oregon Myrtle in locations where temperatures can fall below 20°F or exceed 90°F.

  • scissorsPruning

    Pruning the Oregon Myrtle should be done judiciously to shape the plant and remove any dead or damaged growth. The best time for pruning is in late winter or early spring before new growth starts. Prune no more than one-third of the plant at a time to ensure it remains healthy and vigorous. Regular light pruning can encourage bushier growth.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    Oregon Myrtle requires acidic soil with a pH range of about 5.5 to 6.5. A mix of peat moss, coarse sand, and pine bark suits it well, ensuring well-draining conditions while retaining some moisture.

  • plantRepotting

    Oregon Myrtle does not require frequent repotting; it should only be repotted every 2-3 years as it prefers to be somewhat root-bound.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    Oregon Myrtle thrives in moderate to high humidity levels, ideally between 50-70%.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Place in bright, indirect light with high humidity.

    • Outdoor

      Partial shade with moist, well-draining soil.

    • Hardiness zone

      7-9 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    Kalmiopsis leachiana, commonly known as Kalmiopsis, begins its life as a seed that germinates when conditions are moist and cool. The seed develops into a seedling with a basal rosette of leaves, illustrating its initial vegetative stage, where it focuses on root and foliage growth. As the plant matures into its flowering stage, typically in late spring or early summer, it produces small, fragrant, pink to purple flowers that are attractive to pollinators. Once pollinated, its flowers develop into capsules filled with tiny seeds, representing the reproductive stage. Upon reaching maturity, these seeds are dispersed by wind, water, or animal activity, which allows the life cycle to continue. During the plant's perennial life span, it can go through multiple cycles of vegetative growth and reproduction, typically thriving in serpentine soils in the regions of southwest Oregon it naturally inhabits.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Spring-early summer

    • Kalmiopsis leachiana, commonly known as Kalmiopsis, is a rare shrub native to the Oregon wilderness. The most popular method of propagation for Kalmiopsis is by seed. For successful germination, it's best to sow the seeds in late winter to early spring. Cold stratification for about 4 weeks, which means placing the seeds in a moist substrate in cold storage, such as a refrigerator at a temperature nearing 40°F (approximately 4.4°C), can enhance germination rates. Sow the stratified seeds in a well-drained soil mix, and cover them lightly with additional soil. The soil should be kept consistently moist, but not waterlogged, and the seed tray should be placed in a bright area but out of direct sunlight until germination, which may vary from a few weeks to several months due to the unpredictability of native seeds.