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

Rosemary plants

Fall Planting Tips: 3 Flowering Herbs to Plant Now In Southern California Gardens

It is a lucky cook who is able to pluck a few fresh sprouts from a nearby herb plant to spice up a dish on the stove. Here are a few fabulous herbs that do well in drought tolerant gardens. Fall is a perfect time to plant them, so get out there already! Here are 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

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Delicate Flowering Crape Myrtle Lagerstroemia for Hot Weather Gardens and Friday Floral

Here in Los Angeles, the Crape Myrtle Trees begin blooming around April and are still in bloom now in July, despite the 100 degree heat wave. These perennials are known for their beautiful clusters of flowers that look like crinkles of crepe paper. Colors come in bright white, dusty pinks, neon reds onto pink and Read More

kalanchoe plant flower

Growing Kalanchoe for Drought Tolerant Gardens or as House Plants for Friday Floral

You may not think of kalanchoes as succulent plants, but they are. Kalanchoes are another member of the Crassulaceae or Stonecrop family. They are reliable dry garden bloomers known for their bright flowers. Most varieties are perennial and evergreen, making them perfect candidates for my hot, dry landscape. Their flowers bloom in small bouquets of 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

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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

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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

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Leyland Cypress Fast-Growing Drought Tolerant Landscape Screen Plants

Leyland cypress (Cupressocyparis leylandii) is a very fast growing tree that grows tall and thin, making them perfect for privacy screen plants in the landscape.  These plants can grow four to five feet in one season!  Their columnar shape helps them fit in along the back of the border or between houses.  The top is a Read More

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Flowering Thyme, Drought Tolerant Herb With Elvin Blooms For Friday Floral

I have a new addition to my drought tolerant herb collection; thyme.  Common Thyme or English Thyme (Latin name Thymus vulgaris) is another Mediterranean native, so it’s perfect for my dry garden too.  These herbs grow as small shrubs or shrublets with tiny, oval leaves measuring just 1/4 inch long.  They are perennial and flower Read More