queen annes lace

10 Drought Tolerant Plants for Waterwise Gardening

Looking for some plants suitable for waterwise gardening? I have a list for you! But, before we dive into the exciting world of drought-tolerant plants for your garden, let's take a moment to understand what makes these plants so special. So, what exactly does it mean for a plant to be drought-tolerant? Well, it's all about their ability to survive and even thrive in environments with limited water availability. These strong and resilient beauties also have some remarkable characteristics that allow them to adapt and conserve water in dry conditions. Let's explore these characteristics further:

Deep root systemdeep-reaching root systems that enable them to access water from deeper soil layers
Succulencecacti and agaves, store water in their fleshy leaves and stems, allowing them to survive in dry climates
Reduced Leaf Surfaceplants have smaller or needle-like leaves, minimizing water loss through evaporation
Waxy or hairy leaveswaxy or hairy leaf surfaces can reduce water loss by creating a protective barrier against evaporation
Characteristics of drought tolerant plants

10 Drought Tolerant Plants

Hummingbird Sage

Photo Credit: Qauzuy Garden

This beautiful plant, also known as Pitcher Sage or Hummingbird Pitcher Sage, is a native of California. It is a perennial that attracts hummingbirds and other pollinators with its vivid flowers. Hummingbird Sage thrives in partial shade to full sun, so find a spot that receives at least six hours of direct sunlight per day. The soil should be a slightly sandy, or loamy well-draining soil.

Creeping Thyme

Photo Credit: Bloomama

A lovely and decorative ground cover plant with aromatic foliage and small, colorful flowers, Creeping Thyme is excellent for a waterwise garden. Creeping thyme thrives in full sun. So, it is important to choose a location that receives at least six hours of direct sunlight per day for optimal growth and flowering. Creeping thyme prefers a sandy or loamy well-draining soil.

Angelina Stonecrop

Photo Credir: Cristinas Garden

Angelina Stonecrop is a perennial, groundcover, evergreen plant with succulent foliage. It forms a long growing mat with beautiful needle-like leaves. It is fast growing up to about 4 inches tall and thrives in full sun or partial sun. It can also be found naturally occurring around or near rocks or stones.

Blue Hyssop

Photo Credit: Seed Cult

Blue Hyssop can tolerate poor, dry, sandy soil but it prefers a well-draining and fertile loam. One of the famous Old World Herbs, blue hyssop prefers full sun, but will do well in partial shade. Other hyssop varieties boast pink or red flowers.


Photo Credit: Gilbert H Wild

Asters bloom purple or blue flowers and will produce through spring late in the growing season as far as October. They have daisy-like flowers that add a pop of blue or purple to your garden space. They are a full sun loving perennial plant that will last years when properly cared for. Asters prefer a well-drained loamy soil.

Aloe Vera

Photo credit: Tropical Plants FL

Aloe Vera, a succulent, has green and fleshy leaves. Aloe Vera plants are super drought tolerant and love bright, indirect sunlight and a dry, sandy soil. When I had Aloe Vera, I found that it did great with 1 cup of water once a week. That's it! So be careful not to overwater.

Queen Anne's Lace

Photo Credit: Cane Creek Meadows

Queen Anne's Lace, a beautiful wildflower, is noticeable along the highways of here in Mississippi and I just love it! It reminds me of Baby's Breath and is beautiful in any wildflower arrangement or bouquet. It is also known as the wild carrot, and is a Biennial. A biennial is a plant that takes two years to grow from seed to fruition and then dies. The wildflower prefers full sun and is adaptable to the driest and sandiest of soils.


Photo Credit: Back To Nature Company

Lavender is a beautiful perennial plant that forms as a compact shrub. It has purple spiked upright flowers and enjoys a dry, well-drained soil, and full sun. An alkaline soil will increase the fragrance, so plant in a dry somewhat chalky soil. Lavender should be watered frequently during its first growing season until well established, then water once a week.


Photo Credit: Zella Jake Farm Garden

Calendula is often referred to as “pot marigolds,” as they do favor in appearance. This daisy-like plant comes in yellow, orange, red, white, and pink. It enjoys full sun and a well-draining soil and occasional watering. The flowers of Calendula are edible and can be dried and steeped as a tea.


Photo Credit: Sacred Roots Nursery

Rosemary boasts clusters of small, light blue to white flowers and slender, needle-like, gray-green leaves on spiked woody stems. It is a perennial herb that enjoys a sandy and loamy soil with full sun exposure. It is a difficult plant to grow from seed, a starter plant or cuttings will have more successful growth.

Waterwise gardening not only benefits the environment by conserving water but also allows you to create a beautiful and sustainable landscape. Drought-tolerant plants possess unique characteristics that allow them to thrive in environments with limited water availability. This list provides a diverse range of planting options, each with its own distinctive qualities and preferences. From the striking Hummingbird Sage to the aromatic Rosemary, these plants add color, texture, and fragrance to any garden space.

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