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    Top 9 drought tolerant plants

    If a client is asking for advice regarding drought tolerant plants, a selection of the plants below may be worth looking into.

    Verbascum (Cotswold Group) ‘Pink Domino’
    mullein ‘Pink Domino’

    drought tolerant
    Verbascum (Cotswold Group) ‘Pink Domino’

    Verbascum can be annuals, biennials, perennials or subshrubs mostly with hairy leaves and 5-petalled, saucer-shaped flowers.

    ‘Pink Domino’ is a perennial to 1.2m in height, with a basal rosette of dark green, wrinkled leaves and erect spikes of dark-eyed, deep rose-pink flowers 3cm in width.

    BEST USE: Drought tolerant plants; Flower borders and beds; Cottage & informal garden; Gravel garden; Wildlife gardens.


    Thymus ‘Highdown’
    thyme ‘Highdown’

    drought tolerant
    Thymus ‘Highdown’

    Thymus are evergreen woody-based perennials, shrub or sub-shrubs with small aromatic leaves and terminal whorls of small, 2-lipped, tubular, purple, pink or white flowers in late spring or summer.

    ‘Highdown’ has upright bushy habit reaching about 25cm. The foliage is highly aromatic; pink-mauve flowers in summer.

    BEST USE: Drought tolerant plants; Garden edging; Low maintenance; Cottage & informal garden; Gravel garden; Patio & container plants; Rock garden; Wildlife gardens


    Cotoneaster dammeri
    bearberry cotoneaster

    Cotoneaster dammeri

    Cotoneaster can be deciduous or evergreen shrubs or small trees, with simple, entire leaves and clusters of small white or pink flowers in spring and summer, followed by showy red, purple or black berries.

    C. dammeri is a vigorous, prostrate evergreen shrub spreading to 2m, with small, rounded veiny leaves and small white flowers in early summer, followed by bright red berries.

    BEST USE: Drought tolerant plants; Low maintenance; Ground cover; Banks and slopes.


    Agave victoriae-reginae
    Queen Victoria century plant

    Agave victoriae-reginae

    Agave can be perennial or monocarpic succulents, forming rosettes of usually rigid, fleshy, spiny-edged leaves, with funnel-shaped flowers in racemes or panicles often much taller than the rosettes.

    A. victoriae-reginae is an evergreen perennial forming a rosette of thick, straight, mid-green, spine-tipped leaves to 30cm in length, with creamy-white flowers borne in narrow, erect or arching racemes to 4m in length.

    BEST USE: Drought  tolerant plants; Mediterranean climate plants; Patio & container plants; Coastal.


    Dianthus plumarius ‘Sweetness’
    clove pink ‘Sweetness’

    Dianthus plumarius ‘Sweetness’

    Dianthus can be annuals, evergreen perennials or subshrubs with narrow, often greyish leaves and showy flowers that are frequently fragrant.

    ‘Sweetness’ is a dwarf, evergreen perennial with narrow, grey-green leaves, creating a spreading mat with multi-flowered stems to 15cm in height. The highly-scented, bicolour flowers, to 5cm wide, are saucer-shaped with fringed petals, 5cm wide, in a range of colours from white, through pale-pink to dark-magenta pink. Flower centres are of a contrasting, darker shade of pink to the main petal.

    BEST USE: Banks and slopes; Flower borders and beds; Ground cover; Drought tolerant plants; Cut flowers; Garden edging; City & courtyard gardens; Coastal cottage & informal garden; Gravel garden; Rock garden; Patio & container plants.


    Iris ‘Celebration Song’ (TB)
    iris ‘Celebration Song’

    Iris ‘Celebration Song’ (TB)

    Iris may be rhizomatous or bulbous perennials, with narrow leaves and erect stems bearing flowers with 3 large spreading or pendent fall petals, alternating with 3 erect, often smaller, standard petals, in late winter, spring or early summer.

    Tall Bearded irises are herbaceous rhizomatous perennials to 70cm or more, with flowers 10-20cm across, bearded on the falls, in late spring and early summer.

    ‘Celebration Song’ is a rhizomatous perennial, 75-100 cm high, with glaucous leaves and scented, ruffled flowers in early summer. Flower have soft apricot standards, soft lavender falls and bright orange beards.

    BEST USE: Flower borders and beds; Wall-side borders; Cut flowers; Drought tolerant plants; Cottage & informal garden; City & courtyard gardens.


    Delosperma cooperi
    Cooper’s ice plant

    Delosperma cooperi

    Delosperma are mat-forming perennials, or dwarf shrubs, with smooth, fleshy leaves. The daisy-like flowers are brightly coloured in shades of pink, purple, yellow, red, orange or white.

    D. cooperi is a mat-forming, evergreen succulent with cylindrical light green leaves, up to 5cm long, and glossy, deep purplish-pink, daisy-like flowers, up to 5cm across, produced in mid- and late summer.

    BEST USE: Banks and slopes; Drought tolerant plants; Ground cover; City & courtyard gardens; Coastal; Gravel garden; Patio & container plants; Mediterranean climate plants.


    Scabiosa columbaria subsp. Ochroleuca
    pale yellow scabious

    Scabiosa columbaria subsp. Ochroleuca

    Scabiosa can be annuals, biennials or herbaceous or evergreen perennials, with simple or pinnately lobed leaves and characteristic flower-heads with enlarged outer florets.

    S. columbaria subsp. ochroleuca is a clump-forming herbaceous perennial of dainty character. Leaves are narrow, oval, toothed and grey-green. In summer it bears branching, wiry stems of many pale yellow flowers in the typical petalled, pincushion style of this genus.

    BEST USE: Drought tolerant plants; Cottage & informal garden; Gravel garden.


    Dahlia ‘Bishop of York’ (Misc)
    dahlia ‘Bishop of York’

    Dahlia ‘Bishop of York’ (Misc)

    Dahlia are tuberous rooted perennials with pinnately divided leaves and showy flowerheads, double in many cultivars, in summer and autumn.

    Miscellaneous dahlias encompass those cultivars that do not fit in the more formal classification groups.
    ‘Bishop of York’ is a tuberous perennial to 1m in height with toothed, pinnate, dark brown-green leaves. Single to semi-double, orange-flushed, yellow flowers are borne from midsummer to early autumn.

    BEST USE: Flower borders and beds; Cut flowers; drought tolerant plants; Wall-side borders; City & courtyard gardens; Cottage & informal garden; Patio & container plants; Architectural; Wildlife gardens

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