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Drought-Resistant Plants for an Eco-Friendly Garden

drought-resistant plants
A lush and green garden is a welcome sight, but with many parts of the country suffering from water shortage, choosing to plant drought-resistant plants that require less water will reduce your water bills and make your garden more eco-friendly.

Drought-resistant plants do not mean only cacti. There are many flowering plants, shrubs, and perennials that have been developed to be drought-resistant. These plants will survive on rainfall after they have become established.

However, the first year or first month you will have to ensure that they are watered adequately. After that the drought resistant plants might not bloom when there is no rainfall or watering, but will survive and add color to your garden after you water them or there is adequate rainfall.

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General Watering Tips

Whether you have planted only drought-resistant plants or some sections of your garden have plants that require regular watering, you need to follow the rule of occasional deep watering rather than frequent shallow watering.

A general rule of thumb is to water the plants once a week so that the soil receives an inch of water. Avoid watering the leaves since this can lead to the growth of fungi.

Covering the soil with mulch will also help prevent water evaporation from the soil, helping to delay watering sessions.

Drought-Resistant Plants

Yarrow ‘Coronation Gold’: These are golden yellow flowers that bloom among tall silvery gray leaves. The flowers bloom from mid-summer to early autumn. The plants grow up to three feet in height and require plenty of direct sunlight and soil that handles moisture well with the proper drainage capabilities.

Silver Artemisias: You can add fragrance to your garden with this silvery gray leafy plant. The aromatic leaves grow from between one and a half feet to four feet in height depending on the variety you choose. These plants thrive in direct sunlight and when they are growing in well-drained soil. They can be invasive and you need to divide them often to limit their spread.

Purple Coneflower: Another plant that prefers direct sunlight and well-drained soil is the purple coneflower. The plant grows to be between .6 to 1.3 meters or two and four feet in height.

Tall Bearded Iris: This hardy plant also requires direct exposure to sunlight and well-drained soil. It blooms in spring and is a great ornamental plant with blade-like leaves and purple flowers with six petals. The plant grows to be more than .6 meters or two feet in height.

Rosemary: Another hardy plant that produces both flowers and aromatic leaves. The pine-like leaves add a distinct aroma to the garden while the sun-loving plant will thrive on well-drained soil and less water.

Common Thyme: This is a garden plant that blooms in late spring and early summer. The bush-like plants grow to a maximum of one foot in height and the flowers are white or light purple in color. The plant can be grown in either direct sunlight or lightly shaded areas.

Lavender: These mounding plants flower in the summer. The silvery gray leaves of lavender are spiky and the plant grows to between two and three feet in height. The flowers can be lavender, purple, or white depending on the variety you choose.

Common Sage: The wooly gray green leaves of this plant make them attractive throughout the growing season. The plant prefers direct sunlight and a soil that is not too saturated and that allows the water to drain away appropriately. It can grow to between .6 to 1 meter or two to three feet in height.

Hens and Chicks: This is a succulent plant with blue green leaves that are tipped with red or purple highlights in the summer. The plants should be placed in direct sunlight or lightly shaded locations and the soil should not be flooded.

Snow-in-Summer: This plant is very short, only six to ten centimeters or two to three inches in height. The leaves are silvery and the flowers are star-shaped and white. The plant thrives in direct sunlight and in soil that does not hold water for extended periods of time.

Creeping Phlox: This is a hardy plant that grows in fertile soil that is well drained. The flowers bloom in late spring or early summer. The plant is only six to 21 centimeters or two to six inches tall and the leaves are bright green and form a majestic background for the white, pink, or violet flowers. These plants can make attractive borders.

Sedum: This plant has fleshy evergreen leaves and grows well in average or fertile soil. The plant requires direct sunlight. It flowers in summer and produces loose clusters of purple or white flowers. The short plant attains a maximum height of about 14 centimeters or four inches.

An eco-friendly garden should make every effort to conserve water, using drought-resistant plants, storing rain water in barrels, and using mulch to help the soil retain moisture for a longer period of time. These steps will ensure that your garden is lush and enticing without consuming a lot of precious water during the dry months.

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About the Author

Greg Bailey is a partner at Outdoor Living Manufacturing Ltd, a value added forest company specializing in do-it-yourself western red cedar kits. He has been in the forest industry for over 30 years and an owner at OLM for over 10 years.

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