Five Drought Tolerant Plants.

token28001(zone7b NC)July 9, 2010

In my second summer with very little rain, I've come to realize there are some plants that perform very well with little to no extra moisture. They wilt during the day, but every morning they look great.

1. Echinacea. Any and all of them have done extremely well with little rain over the past couple months and 90+ degrees.

2. Rudbeckia fulgida. Hirta doesn't do as well. I just bought 12 of these perennials.

3. Sedums. No arguments here. Just keeps on keeping on.

4. Agastache. Purple and white are the ones I have. Hoping to add a lot more this year via wintersowing.

5. Coreopsis "Full Moon". Love this one. Large flowers, tall plants. Hardly any flopping.

I'm going to redo the yard this winter/next spring with divisions from these 5 varieties. I'm removing all the poor performers. Adding in a few hardy hibiscus, some daylilies, butterfly bushes, and grasses, I should have a nice cottage garden, still.

Melampodiums and zinnias are the annuals I'll keep. Everything else will need to find a new home. What are your 5 favorite perennials for drought conditions?

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Tom -- do we have a blog post topic? :-) I do agree on the agastache, coneflowers, sedum and coreopsis, so I'll throw in a few different perennials.

  1. Creeping perennial heliotrope. Indestructible and blooms 6 months.

  2. Russian sage.

  3. Salvia greggii 'Dark Dancer', 'Diane', 'Navajo Red', 'Autumn Sage'.

  4. Leucanthemum x superbum 'Paladin' and 'Broadway Lights'.

  5. Gaillardia 'Tizzy', 'Yellow Queen'.

Annuals - zinnias, comos, salvia 'Victoria', and purple fountain grass. Verbena bonariensis is perennial for me, but an annual for others.


    Bookmark   July 9, 2010 at 2:03PM
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girlgroupgirl(8 ATL)

gomphrena (annual)
santa barbara daisy
coreopsis triloba (biennial)
cup plant
hedychium ginger

    Bookmark   July 9, 2010 at 3:08PM
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aside from those already mentioned I've had good luck with gaura (butterfly kisses), obiedent plant and catmint doing well for me with no extra watering for 3 weeks of no rain and high heat/humidity.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2010 at 3:33PM
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anniebean(ct 6)

New here - but loving reading the forum. Aside from the many already mentioned, I never water my yarrow (I actually don't water any of my gardens except for new plantings) but I noticed some of you are from much hotter climates. Tho it has been wicked hot and dry here for weeks now. Rain is supposed to come tomorrow - I'm doing the happy dance :-) Lynn

    Bookmark   July 9, 2010 at 4:11PM
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agreed, yarrow does well in drought.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2010 at 6:02PM
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Totally different climate, but what grows well here, with no watering at all (and very little rain from July through September) are shadbush, daffodils, rosa woodsii, peonies and lilacs (although the last two would probably prefer water). We have daffodils, lilacs and peonies behind the old farmhouse and every year they come up and bloom with no extra water from us. The shadbush and rosa woodsii are native and grow wild along the fence lines :)

    Bookmark   July 9, 2010 at 6:44PM
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token28001(zone7b NC)

Cameron, I've just been paying attention to what's doing well during this new drought phase we seem to be entering. It was 100 degrees here yesterday. I think 8 days have passed since we received .25" of rain. Another week or so before that we got just over 1/2". So yeah, there will be a blog post about this at some point. I'm just waiting til fall to do my divisions. I think I'll try to divide my coreopsis into about 100 plants. I can get 12 from a single clump.

I've tried growing the verbena, but still no blooms on the tiny things. Two years running now they've failed to bloom, so no seeds to scatter. The agastache today looks baked.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2010 at 7:35PM
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pippi21(Z7 Silver Spring, Md.)

I think it only reached 97 today but was 103 on Wednesday. I watered all the flowerbeds today and worked on weeding. How come the weeds seem to manage to grow in drought conditions?
Did you plant those deep purple zinnias? I thought I planted some of each color but so far none that deep purple have bloomed.(Giant, Violet Queen)So far only one of the colors has bloomed, but I see buds forming on the others. Those came from Crosman's..all their seeds are 1950 prices and all germinated that I planted(I think) Will be ordering from them again. Fast delivery time after the order is placed.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2010 at 8:09PM
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aimeekitty(9-10, SW 18)

I agree with a lot of ones that have already been posted,
... and I'll especially say... TRY GUARA. It's so charming. The butterfly flowers knod in the wind and you can see other plants through them. I just love them. I'm going to get more.

Yarrow does really well for me... and CERTAIN lavenders have done well. I don't know why, but grosso lavender seems to be the hardest for me to kill.

and certain penstemon do better than others. If you kill one type, try another. There are a couple varieties (not sure which) that just keep doing fabulously, while others die very quickly. Mind, I'm probably doing something wrong with them.

Morea and Lily of the Nile are pretty tough ladies and they look great no matter what you do to them.

Another good one is Chinese Foxglove. They're nice and tall, look very romantic, and are more drought tolerant than other true foxgloves.

My roses, in general, seem to be pretty drought tolerant, even though they're mostly only a few months old. :)

    Bookmark   July 9, 2010 at 9:58PM
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