Drought tolerant perennials

Drought tolerant perennials are popular these days, especially with those of you in the midst of a heatwave as we are here in Ontario. 

Irrigation Systems

Even if you have an irrigation system, these hardy perennials should be a staple in your garden to avoid wasting your money on plants and water.  Just be sure to place the hoses or plants (whichever you install last) strategically.  For example, ornamental grasses do not appreciate wet feet.  In fact, the quickest way to kill them off is to overwater them.

Read the Labels or Research to Find Drought Tolerant Plants

One way to determine if plants (annuals or perennials) are drought resistant is to read the labels at the nurseries or stores where you purchase your plants. Some (larger) nurseries even have separate drought-tolerant sections to make your search easier. I have discovered asking nursery staff which plants are suitable is hit and miss.

Another, more proactive, plan is to research drought-resistant plants hardy to your garden zone before you head out the door to shop for plants.

Here are a few of my favourite outstanding perennials that I rely on in my gardens for hot summer color:

  • lavender
  • Russian sage
  • ornamental grasses
  • tickseed
  • stonecrop and sedum, available in multiple colors, great for hot borders
  • daisies

If you haven’t already, consider adding some to your gardens. Just be sure to wait until the heatwave is over to do so!

Favourite perennials and annuals this summer

Even though our summer was hot and sunny with very little rain, most of the perennials and annuals in my and my clients’ gardens were beautiful here in zone 5.  Here are a few of my favourites…

 

Although we are currently well into September, many of these continue to bloom.  The peach colored shrub rose, for example, has been blooming all summer in a pot on my back deck with lots of buds, promising even more blooms