Dry spells happen, no matter where you live. But by choosing plants that are less thirsty and more resilient during droughts, your garden will survive Mother Nature’s worst. Make sure whatever plant you fall in love with works in your USDA Hardiness Zone. And remember that even the most water-wise plants need you to haul out the watering can, lawn sprinkler, or soaker hose if it’s super-dry. For your perennials and shrubs, keep them well-watered for a couple of seasons until they get established. And always, always, always give plants an extra edge by adding a layer of mulch, which retains moisture and keeps down weeds that compete for water and nutrients.
The portulaca, aka “moss rose,” is able to grow in water scarcity, and even in poor soil. Thanks to its thick juicy succulent leaves, it can survive for a long time while deprived of water. As you can see in the picture, it comes in a great variety of wonderful radiant colors. On the one hand it is a water-frugal plant, but on the other hand, it requires plenty of warmth to thrive.
Geraniums are ideal plants for window boxes and containers. They grow best in a sunny position, but they will need some afternoon shade in very hot summer weather.
When watering Geraniums, be sure to water the base of the plant and keep the leaves dry to avoid fungal diseases. Geraniums aren’t frost tolerant so they’ll need to be moved indoors before the frost arrives.
Lavender plants produce stunning spikes of bluish-purple flowers that bloom throughout the growing season.
Found naturally in dry, sandy soil of the Mediterranean, lavender has evolved to subsist on little water. Keep the soil evenly moist during your plant’s first year of growth. But after that you generally only have to water if the first few inches of soil are dry. Also, regularly pinch off spent blooms to promote additional flowering throughout the growing season.
The bougainvillea is a ‘crowned champion’ in tolerating dry climates across the world. It seems to be one of the most resistant shrubs that thrive neglected in extreme and intense weather conditions. This colorful plant is quite easy to grow as well.
Coreopsis, also known as Tickseed, are hardy drought resistant flowers. They can be grown as an annual or perennial and they’re great for attracting birds, bees and butterflies to your garden.
Coreopsis flowers can be yellow, white, pink or red and you can get a second bloom if you deadhead the spent flowers.
Alliums are easy to grow perennial flowers that are perfect for dry climates. They flower in mid-summer and have large purple sphere shaped blooms.
Echinacea, also known as Purple Coneflower, is an easy to grow perennial that requires very little maintenance. It blooms from summer until early fall and regular deadheading can prolong the flowering time.
Echinacea grows best in full sun and is mostly free of pests and diseases.
8. Trumpet Vine
Trumpet vine is a drought tolerant climbing vine with bright red and orange flowers. It grows well in warm and cool climates and can be planted in full sun or partial shade.
Trumpet vines are great for attracting hummingbirds to your garden and they can be grown on fences, trellises, arbors or pergolas.