The Q&A Archives: What Plants Grow Best In Alkaline Soil

Question: I live in an area where the soil ph is about 7.9 and there is a high soluable salt percentage. How do I find out what plants will grow best with this soil condition. This is a zone 5 garden, full sun, little shelter from wind, with nutrient rich soil that is more clay than loam.

Answer: Very alkaline soils can be challenging to many plants. Those that not only survive, but thrive, include Japanese Cherry, (including Weeping Cherry), Cercis (Judas-tree), flowering crabapple, and black pine. Shrubs include Cistus, Weigela, Buddleia (Butterfly Bush), Hebe, Mugo Pine, Dictamnus (Burning Bush), and Ceratostigma (hardy Plumbago).

For even more ideas, consult the book "Right Plant, Right Place" by Nicola Ferguson, published by Summit Books, ISBN# 0-671-52396-1.

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