For those of you who are first time visitors—we live in Southern California. We’re in the 4th year of a drought. It’s serious. I posted some early research on plants that are drought tolerant. To be honest, I haven’t plunged into planting because the garden seems dismal to me right now and I’m optimistic that El Niño will rescue us from this depressing condition!
That said, I’ve soldiered on in my quest for drought tolerant plant material that I could live with. I’m not a fan of a desert landscape and my goal was to find plants that could almost mimic an English garden, but not require much water. Before you laugh so hard you can’t read the rest of my post, there are a surprising number, of what I consider lush, green, blooming plants, that would lend beauty to any garden and they aren’t very thirsty.
I’m going to start with two plants that Cindy of the fabulous Rough Luxe blog left with me in comments. She followed up with a post on her drought tolerant garden, located in California, that requires very little irrigation. The two plants she recommended are incredible and will be the first things I buy for the back yard when I order. They are Nepeta Faassenii
This beauty requires full sun or morning sun, afternoon shade and works for zones 4-9. It blooms late spring to late summer—that works for me. It’s considered waterwise. Maybe it will impart some wisdom to the plants around it. 🙂
The second plant that Cindy recommended and I like the looks of is Teucrium
Teucrium chamaedrys -This evergreen or deciduous subshrub is grown for its attractive, dark green aromatic foliage and its light pink to deep purple flowers, which blossom in summer and early fall. This garden workhorse can be used in troughs, containers, low hedges, knot gardens, rock gardens, or as edging…encouraging, right? But wait, there’s more…
This is a plant we used in our landscape jobs a lot. It was for those who wanted pretty flowers but didn’t want to do very much work in their garden. Mexican Sage. The great thing about this plant is that you can trim it back if it gets too big for surrounding garden and it happily returns within a matter of a few weeks, blooming and happy. (Note: this is Southern California conditions, no frost here).
You may be wondering what I’m going to do for contrast in the color palate, since I have selected pinks and purples so far. I hope that my Iceberg shrub roses (white) can continue thriving (so far, so good).
The next plant on my list is Yarrow (achillea) which comes in a variety of colors. Good in zones 3-9. The appeal for this plant, besides its low water needs, is that you can divide it every few years and make more plants for other areas of your garden and it attracts butterflies. The plant that gives back! 🙂
A surprise to me as far as drought tolerant plants is the Alstroemeria. I buy these flowers as filler from Trader Joe’s. They come in a wide variety of color and are planted from a bulb (similar to day lily) and bloom every summer. Zones 6-7 and 9-10. For those with deer issues, they are deer resistant. They require part sun/sun.
The final installment for this drought busting plant list is Belleza Gaura. It’s easy to grow, full sun loving and drought friendly
If you’re in a drought plagued area, you may be interested in some tips from Dave of Dave’s Garden. I’ve been saving dishwater and using it around the garden as a result of his suggestion. Happy gardening wherever you are.
All Vintage Garden Graphics via Fairy Graphics