drought tolerant plants - Knowledgebase Question

Sunland, Ca
Question by sbkreutz
July 5, 2009
I rent the home I'm in but would like to have it look nice, so I've planted some flowers and such. There's so automatic watering system, and sometimes I forget to water. It's very hot and dry up here in the San Fernando Calley of CA, esp. this time of year!!! What pretty plants can you suggest, that won't die after a few weeks....with little water? They can be flowering or not. Thank you. Susan

Answer from NGA
July 5, 2009


There are literally hundreds of drought tolerant plants you can grow. Some of my favorites include: Mexican sage; Salvia (many varieties); Gazania; Ceanothus; Agastache; Penstemon; Acacia (many varieties); Lavender; Yarrow; Germander; Russian sage; Blue catmint; Kangaroo paw; Cape honeysuckle; Bottle brush; Jacaranda; Aloe; Blue hibiscus and Rockrose. My favorite low-maintenance groundcover plant is Chamaemelum nobile, or Roman chamomile. It makes a great ground cover in sun or part shade, and its fine, airy foliage is a lush shade of green. Once established, it can easily withstand periods of drought. It doesn't need mowing. It is quite tough; when you walk on it, not only does it grow more profusely, but its oil is released and the scent is terrific. In addition, I am fond of water-stingy herbs such as lavender, rosemary and thyme. And my garden is full of hardy bulbs, such as daylilies, because no matter the conditions, you can't seem to stop them from growing. Look for other possibilities in your local garden center. Enjoy your garden!

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