Saturday, July 7, 2012

Tough Stuff in the Garden -- drought-tolerant plants blooming in the summer heat

We've reached the dog days of summer in Central Texas. But then again, the dog days of summer have arrived around most of the country with this unusual and unbearable heat wave causing record temperatures everywhere you look. Some of my trusted summer bloomers are taking a little break -- ready for some pruning to bring on more flowers. But there are drought-tolerant xeric plants in my garden that are taking it all in stride.

This desert rose is just starting to thrive as the heat here mimics desert-like conditions. Needless to say, I don't really water this one.
This butterfly bush is happily putting on purple plumes with only once-a-week watering because of our restrictions.
Many summer annuals are thriving, too.  Zinnias scattered throughout my beds are undaunted by the heat.  These pink cut and come again zinnias and the narrow-leaf zinnias below are both blooming away.

Well-adapted crape myrtle trees are also in full bloom.  This burgundy dwarf variety in the background makes a nice contrast to the ruby crystals grass blooming in front of it.  The ruby crystals are a pass-along from Lancashire Rose of Rock Rose.
These lemons are happily growing into hardy fruit -- they are in a pot so the get a drink and a little shower burst from me almost every day like they would down in South Florida.
While some of my other salvias are done blooming for a bit, this pitcher sage is just getting started.

Drought-tolerant native and adapted plants are being put to the test with these dry 100+ degree days, most are surviving and some are even thriving.  They are always our best bet here in Central Texas.

 Which tough plants are powering on in your garden in this heat?