The Q&A Archives: Sandy Soil

Question: What plants grow best in sandy soil.

Answer: Some good fall bloomers are detailed below.

Helianthus maximiliana 'Lemon Yellow' (Lemon Yellow Maximilian's Sunflower)
This tall plant puts out soft yellow daisy-like flowers and isn't particular about the soil and grows easily in hot, full sun locations, preferably against walls or fences. Once established it is a good xeric plant and the deer and rabbits don't like it. But butterflies do. Zones 4-9.

Helianthus maximiliana 'Santa Fe'
This is one of the last perennials to bloom in the fall and it is certainly one of the showiest. The large golden-yellow flowers are tightly stacked on the top 3-4 feet of the stem and the large deep green symmetrically arranged leaves make an attractive hedge many months before the plant blooms into flower. It likes any
soil, including heavy clay. Rabbits and deer don't like it, but butterflies do. Zones 4-9.

Salvia pitcheri 'Grandiflora' (Pitcher's Blue Sage)
A blue-flowered prairie native, this tall lanky-and very showy flower waits to bloom until early fall. It likes a well-drained soil with not too much clay. Sometimes it gets iron deficient in alkaline soil, so work in some soil sulfur at planting time. Zones 4-9.

Other flowering perennials include:
Saponaria (Giant Flowered Soapwort); a groundcover, Zones 4-8
Solidago (Golden Torch); heat tolerant, attracts butterflies; Zones 4-9
Sedum (October Daphne Stonecrop); pink flowers; Zones 3-10

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