The Q&A Archives: Dry, Full Sun Garden

Question: I have a few large flower beds in my front lawn that I am getting ready to plant in this season, but they get full afternoon sun. During the summer in Southern Oregon it can get up into the upper 90's to the low 100's for weeks at a time and I'm having trouble finding things that will a)survive and b)look nice through the winter as well. I have already planted a lot of lavender, but I was wondering if there were were any shrubs or other perennials that would be able to withstand the summer heat and drought, but also stay green or at least have some winter interest. Right now everything that I have dies back and looks pretty bad after summer. Thanks you for your time and I look forward to hearing from you.

Answer: There actually are quite a few plants that will perform well in a sunny bed in your summer weather. Some suggestions include Barberry, Cistus (rockrose), Irish heath (Daboecia), Erica (heather), Helianthemum (sunrose), Hypericum (St. Johnswort), Juniper, Pieris, Echeveria, Armeria, Euphorbia, Oregano, Saxifrage, Sedums of all kinds, Lithodora, ornamental grasses and Allium (ornamental onion). Some are evergreen and some die down at the end of the season. Planting a variety will give you an ever-changing flower bed for interest all year around.

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