Habit: multi stemmed, spreading evergreen shrub with a dense round crown. The oval shaped leaves are thick, shiny, and often sticky on top with three main veins. They are fragrant when crushed, or in warm weather. Flowers are white in large pyramidal clusters, 2-4 in (5-10 cm) long. Ceanothus velutinus is pleasantly aromatic.
Ecology: open rocky hillsides and partially shaded forests, on moderately dry to moderately moist mountain slopes and on steep canyon slopes. Found in the Cascades and in most of the western states from 3600-9800 ft (1100-3000m).
Growing Conditions: full sun, coarse well-drained soils.
Snowbrush has the ability to fix nitrogen and puts out deep roots. Seed can remain dormant in the soil for 200 years, and is fire resistant, therefore its found in many places fire has recently been through.