from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun Any of several evergreen shrubs or small trees of the genus Arctostaphylos of the heath family, native to the Pacific coast of North America, especially A. manzanita, having white or pink flowers in drooping panicles and red berrylike fruit.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun One of several shrubs or small trees of the genus Arctostaphylos, found in the western United States.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun (Bot.) A name given to several species of Arctostaphylos, but mostly to Arctostaphylos glauca and Arctostaphylos pungens, shrubs of California, Oregon, etc., with reddish smooth bark, ovate or oval coriaceous evergreen leaves, and bearing clusters of red berries, which are said to be a favorite food of the grizzly bear.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun Any evergreen shrub or tree of the genus Arctostaphylos, having smooth red or orange bark and stiff, twisting branches.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun chiefly evergreen shrubs of warm dry areas of western North America
  • noun evergreen tree of the Pacific coast of North America having glossy leathery leaves and orange-red edible berries; wood used for furniture and bark for tanning


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Spanish, diminutive of manzana, apple; see manchineel.]


Help support Wordnik (and make this page ad-free) by adopting the word manzanita.


  • I do not think we have any "manzanita" - cannot think what tree you are looking at.

    From First Unitarian Universalist Church of San Antonio

  • The manzanita is another pretty bush, with pink bells that ripen to small scarlet apples in the fall.

    Stories of California

  • Shelley Estelle, Presidio TrustThe Franciscan manzanita, which is said to be thriving in its new, undisclosed spot at the Presidio.

    NYT > Home Page

  • Common California species such as manzanita, western hemlock, Douglas fir and live oak are also prone to damage by this pest.

    Western Farm Press RSS Feed

  • This was due mainly to her efforts, while Daylight, who rode with a short-handled ax on his saddle-bow, cleared the little manzanita wood on the rocky hill of all its dead and dying and overcrowded weaklings.

    Chapter XXV

  • The pitch from the bench to the meadow was steep yet thickly wooded with oaks and manzanita.


  • He now found himself in a nook of several acres, where the oak and manzanita and madrono gave way to clusters of stately redwoods.

    Chapter VIII

  • The man scratched his head perplexedly and looked a few feet up the hill at the manzanita bush that marked approximately the apex of the "V."

    All Gold Canon

  • He dropped down the rough, winding road through covered pasture, with here and there thickets of manzanita and vistas of open glades.

    Chapter VIII

  • In the open spaces on the slope, beyond the farthest shadow-reach of the manzanita, poised the mariposa lilies, like so many flights of jewelled moths suddenly arrested and on the verge of trembling into flight again.

    All Gold Canon


Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • Citation on arroyo.

    August 26, 2008

  • A fire was laid behind the screen and partly masked by a large spray of manzanita bloom.

    --Raymond Chandler, 1943, The Lady in the Lake, chapter 3

    September 4, 2009

  • small saucy apples blooms

    September 4, 2009

  • manzano was the name of my preschoool, and I was not the apple of my teacher's eye.

    September 4, 2009