Select a site with full sun in coastal areas or high, light shade in hotter inland areas. Here's what California Native Plants for the Garden has to say: "Toyon is the only California native plant that continues to be known by a Native Amarican name. Toyon (Heteromeles arbutifolia) grows in the wild in California. California Christmas Holly is a good alternative to holly if you need something drought-tolerant and a little something for your local birds too. VARIATIONS If Toyon berries are plentiful, instead of Madrone berries, simmer 1 cup Toyon berries, 1 cup water, 1 cup apple juice and ½ cup honey and then follow the same recipe. Dry berries in a well-ventilated … Ground Toyon Berries. Toyon is a great specimen or large hedge plant used alone or mixed with Coffeeberry and Ceanothus and can also be kept many years as a container plant. Toyon or California Christmas Berry or Christmas Holly or Heteromeles arbutifolia, are beautiful shrubs are prized for their bright red berries and deep green leaves. Their natural habitat is chaparral and woodlands below 4000 feet and they seem fairly tolerant of most soils. Know the shrub’s mature height before planting. Collect berries in winter; METHOD. If you know that your shrub will grow to be 15 to 20 feet tall, it’s best not to plant it under a 10-foot-high roof unless you’re up for an ongoing maintenance challenge. Toyon grow in sun or partial shade, and are drought tolerant. Grow toyon on a hillside or sloping bed to provide adequate drainage.