Brush Cherry; Drought Tolerant Screen Plant Profile

Brush Cherry, or Carolina Laurel is a pretty, dependable garden shrub that grows quickly into screens or hedges.  These shrubs can grow up to 30 feet tall and 10 – 12 feet wide.  I have seen mature stands of Carolina Laurel grow even taller. Carolina Laurel is versatile too, growing in full sun to part Read More


Towering, Drought Tolerant Pink Hollyhocks in California for Friday Floral

My neighbor’s hollyhocks are blooming again.  They tower over her garden with huge flowers and I admit to being a wee bit jealous.  The old-fashioned garden hollyhock of my childhood storybooks is also called Althaea rosea.  They are native to the Mediteranian region which means they make perfect flowers for a low water yard.  See? Read More


What’s Blooming In Southern California This April

Wondering what to plant now that will bloom next spring? Here are a few drought tolerant ideas for you. All of these plants in my garden are growing on rainfall alone. OK, when it was 120 degrees last year I may have done a little watering, but that was it, really. I am impressed with Read More

Jade plant crassula ovata flowers

Fall Planting Tips: 3 Flowering Succulent Plants For Drought Tolerant Gardens And Containers

Succulents are plants that are able to store water in their stems and leaves, enabling them to live for long periods of time without water. They are similar to cactus but without the thorns (usually). This is a very large grouping of plants with many different colors, leaf shapes and growth habits. Most succulent plants Read More


Fall Planting Time: Four Flowering Shrubs for Dry Southwestern Gardens

Fall is just around the corner and for gardeners in the southwestern US it is a great time to think about planting perennial shrubs. This is also a great time to plan out your landscape for next year including preparing for more drought! Planting in fall brings a little extra free water from the rain Read More


Texas Ranger; Brave Bloomer in Hot Dry Gardens for Friday Floral

This brave plant currently blooming in 100 degree heat is called Texas Ranger or Leucophyllum frutescens. It is also one of the oddest plants I have grown, but more about that later. After a few years of getting established it is really blooming this year. Most Leucophyllums have purple flowers with more of an open Read More


Astounding Amaryllis Flowers Blooming in So California August Heat

Amaryllis belladonna are fascinating flowers. They bloom straight out of the bare ground on tall stalks. Their flowers are large and dramatic, shaped like trumpets about four inches long. They smell wonderful and can perfume a room on a hot summer day. They bloom in late summer or early fall. The leaves are on a Read More


Flowering Lavender Herb Plants in My Sunny, Dry Southern California Garden

Here is one of my favorite plants; lavender. I have two French lavender plants growing in my garden. Both have been flowering for months now and both have proven to be extremely drought tolerant and beautiful. Even lavender leaves are sticky with essential oils and perfume the air. I use the flowers and leaves for Read More

theGardenPages icon and bougainvillea flowers

Hopseed Bush Or Dodonaea Viscosa, Fast Growing Drought Tolerant Screen Plants for So. California

I have been profiling a number of drought tolerant, fast growing screen plants lately and Dodonaea belongs on the list too.  These lacy shrubs are also called Hop Bush or Hopseed Bush after their seed pods that resemble hops.  Hop Seed bushes come with leaves in either bright, lime green or dark purple.  Both versions Read More

theGardenPages icon and bougainvillea flowers

Santolina Or Lavender Cotton Tough Drought Tolerant Shrubs With Yellow Flowers

Of all the flowering drought tolerant shrubs I have planted in my garden I count santolina, or Lavender cotton, as one of the best. This is a real tough customer when it comes to being completely drought tolerant in my hot, baking southern California garden. They tolerate full sun and summers that can reach over Read More