Favorite Bold and Beautiful Drought-Tolerant Plants
Above photo by Rachel Weill. Plant photos by Doreen Wynja
As you deal with dry conditions, keep in mind that even drought-tolerant plants need water to get established and may require additional irrigation in extreme conditions. Test soil moisture and keep an eye on the weather to determine when plants need water to get through your driest, hottest stretches. In the meantime, we’ll keep hoping for rain.
9 Favorite Drought-Tolerant Perennials for Zones 4-9
Achillea – ‘Desert Eve™ Terracotta’
A compact, early-flowering variety of the easy-care, drought-tolerant favorite. Big, flat clusters of small deep rusty orange flowers attract butterflies and look great in cut flower arrangements, too. Full sun. Up to 20″ tall, 24″ wide. Zoned 4-9.
Agastache – ‘Coral Dwarf’
A hummingbird favorite that adds cheerful, carefree summer color to sunny, dry, and hot beds, borders, or containers. A compact hybrid with a neat habit and increased hardiness, disease resistance, and even tolerance of wet, cold soils. Full sun. Up to 20″ tall, 16″ wide. Zones 5-10.
Coreopsis – ‘Sunstar™ Gold’
An easy-care, prolific bloomer with large, red-eyed, molten gold-colored blooms on feathery, mildew-resistant foliage. This well-behaved selection of a favorite North American native invites butterflies and bees to the garden, as well. Full sun. Up to 24″ tall and 30″ wide. Zones 4-9.
Echinacea – ‘Evolution™ Fiesta’
A spicy color palette of pink, coral, orange, and red light up the summer with a lively display, even when rain refuses to fall. New flowers emerge throughout the summer and age to softer shades, adding to the variations of color. Full sun. Up to 20″ tall, 18″ wide. Zones 4-9.
Gaura – ‘Steffi™ Blush’
Red stems hold large blush-pink blooms that bloom from early spring through fall, adding soft color and fine texture to the garden. Perfect for sunny borders, rock gardens, and containers in hot, dry regions. Full sun. Up to 8″ tall, 20″ wide. Zones 5-10.
Nepeta – ‘Junior Walker™’
A favorite pollinator-friendly, easy-care, and waterwise perennial that features lavender flower spikes and fragrant foliage. This fantastic selection is a sterile dwarf form of the popular Walker’s Low Catmint. The low, spreading habit is perfect for cascading off walls, softening pathway edges, combining with other heat-tolerant perennials in a container, and as a colorful groundcover in a meadow-like garden. Full to partial sun. Up to 16″ tall, 36″ wide. Zones 5-9.
Penstemon – ‘Harlequin™ Pink’
A bold exclusive selection of a drought-tolerant favorite, with a profusion of talk, upright flower spikes that bloom from early summer to fall. The Harlequin™ beardtongue series features vibrant pink (pictured here), magenta, and purple colors, and were selected for its bushy, compact, vigorous, and disease-resistant qualities. Full sun. Up to 22″ tall, 16″ wide. Zones 5-9.
Meadow Sage – ‘Dark Matter™’
An extraordinarily vibrant meadow sage with beautifully vivid purple flower spikes loved by pollinators. Tough, easy to grow, drought-resistant, and reblooming. Full sun. Up to 12″ wide, 16″ tall. Zones 4-9.
Sedum – ‘Evolution™ Purple Crush’
Evolution™ Sedum (Purple Crush pictured with a Colorburst™ Yellow Cape Fuchsia here) is a Monrovia exclusive selection that offers fantastic waterwise color and tough performance. Purple crush features pink summer flowers that bloom from dusty purple buds. Distinctive blue-green foliage has a deep purple house that adds to the display. Full to partial sun. Up to 15″ tall and wide. Zones 4-9.
Although you may not find these exact plants at Herbein’s Garden Center, you’ll be certain to find one very similar!