Top 6 drought tolerant plants

Planting these top 6 drought tolerant plants means they will thrive in dry conditions and longer hot summers which will ultimately mean you can have a low maintenance garden with the environment in mind. All plants need water, but drought tolerant plants need far less, meaning you can use the water from your water butt for other plants that need it. Creating a dry garden is great for hot spots and there are many plants that flower, have texture and fragrance perfect for a drought tolerant space. Many will have long roots which are able to draw up water from deep below the surface and others have evolved to grow smaller leaves meaning less transpiration and others may have fleshy stems where they store water for times of low rainfall.

1. Agapanthus (Lily of the nile)

A really well known and distinctive plant that grows really well in containers or in garden borders. There are many varieties but we love ‘Fireworks’ as the lilac and white flowers look just like fireworks at the top of the long sturdy stem. Agapanthus need water as they establish but after the first year they will need much less. 

2. Geraniums (Pelargoniums)

Geraniums are popular bedding plants, providing vibrant colour and a unique fragrance throughout the Summer and into early Autumn. These sun loving plants can be grown in almost any type of soil and thrive especially well in terracotta pots. Some varieties are great for hanging baskets and work either well planted on their own or combined with other bedding and summer plants.

3. Oenothera (Gaura)

Flowering through midsummer into autumn often where nothing else is growing, the white and pinkish flowers float gracefully in the breeze and will thrive in full sun and well drained soil. Oenothera is a lovely addition to any garden giving it a whimsical feeling, especially if planted amongst grasses and other drought tolerant perennials. 

4. Rosemary

This hardy herb is happy in drier soil, requires very little maintenance and loves plenty of sun. It thrives in poor soils and grows well in a sheltered spot, especially in cold areas. In containers, Rosemary grows best in compost with added grit.

5. Lavender

Lavender is an evergreen shrub, grown for its fragrant leaves and bee-friendly flowers. When choosing Lavender for your garden or pots, be mindful that some lavenders are more hardy than others. They are best planted in full sun and in well-drained soil. However, half hardy and tender lavenders, should be grown in a sheltered spot. It is recommended to cut back at the end of flowering to prevent the stems from becoming woody.

6. Delosperma (Hardy ice plant) 

A wonderful drought tolerant plant again needing very little watering. Delosperma cooperii is a low growing variety which is exceptional for ground cover in containers or in borders. Grow in full sun and well drained soil.

Top 5 drought tolerant plants

There are many more plants that will thrive in drought conditions. Always read the label on any plants you buy which will show if the plant needs a lot of watering or not. Other drought tolerant plants include Erigeron, Verbena bonariensis, Liriope and Nepeta. 

Lakeside has plants in store for a dry garden and advice on hand when you visit us.