8 Drought-Tolerant Plants

Give your garden years of reliable color. Once established, these tough perennials can breeze through hot, dry weather.

Bright Red Firecracker Blooms

Desert beardtongue (Penstemon pseudospectabilis) is a great wildlife-attracting perennial for a low-water garden. Native to New Mexico, it thrives in heat as long as you water it deeply every couple of weeks or so. Hardy in USDA Zones 5 to 10.

Violet Cloud skullcap (Scutellaria 'Violet Cloud') has striking, deep purple flowers on petite plants. It's the result of a cross between Scutellaria resinosa, which is native to Oklahoma, and S. suffrutescens of Texas. Plant it in full sun and a well-draining soil. Hardy in USDA Zones 6 to 10.

Hummingbird trumpet (Zauschneria garrettii 'Orange Carpet') is a low-growing perennial with orange-red tubular flowers. Native to the southwestern U.S., it does well in a rich, well-draining soil and full sun to part shade; afternoon shade is ideal. Attracts hummingbirds. Hardy in USDA Zones 5 to 9.

Swallowtail columbine (Aquilegia 'Swallowtail') has large flowers with enormously long spurs, and plant size is about two feet tall and almost as wide. Plant it in full sun to part shade. A native of central Arizona, it's hardy in USDA Zones 5 to 10.

Orange hummingbird mint (Agastache aurantiaca 'Just Peachy') has bicolor flowers that change from orange to pink as they mature. Watch the gradation in color as the buds open and age. Plant it in full sun to part shade and a well-draining soil. Hummingbirds also love this plant. Hardy in USDA Zones 6 to 10.

Fringed Purple Ice Plant

Hardy ice plant (Delosperma) has a tight, low-growing habit complemented by evergreen foliage. Enjoy its colorful flowers in springtime. Plant it in full sun and a well-draining soil. Hardy in USDA Zones 5 to 7.

Scarlet Spires salvia (Salvia 'Scarlet Spires') has striking scarlet-red flowers that appear in early to late June and last until frost. Plant it full sun to part shade. Attracts hummingbirds and butterflies. Hardy in USDA Zones 7 to 10.

Veronica, Big Blue, is Proven Perennial Winner Photo courtesy of Proven Winners Image courtesy of Proven Winners

Veronica 'Big Blue' is one of many low-growing forms of veronica, also called speedwell, that's a great option for low-water gardens. Hardy in USDA Zones 4 to 9. — Image courtesy of Proven Winners

Colorful Spike Shaped Flower

Another common form of speedwell (veronica) produces upright panicles of pink or blue blooms.

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