Each time I plan out a new section of garden I try to make it as low maintenance as possible. A garden bed that will grow happily with some water and fertiliser, some mulch to keep the weeds down and a prune every year or so and requiring minimal water to stay alive.
So here are my top ten plants to have in your garden that will grow well in hot or cool dry conditions, they are ranked in no particular order.
Duranta ‘Geisha Girl’ – A plant that originated in Japan, it grows well in hot or cold conditions and forms wonderful purple flowers with a white center, followed by orange lantern shaped seed pods. It loves full sun and requires nothing more that a prune and fertiliser after flowering. Grows to 2 metres as a weeping standard.
Gazania – This plant is that hardy in all conditions it has been noted as a noxious weed in Australia if grown outside of a contained garden. It produces medium orange and yellow daisy flowers. It grows low to the ground a spreads easily. If you grow Gazania make sure you keep it under control!
Lavender – Growing as a medium sized bush, it can be hedged or pruned to any shape. A hardy plant that produces small purple flowers on stems with a lavender fragrance. A must in any garden.
Dwarf Sacred Japanese Bamboo (Nandina domestica ‘Nana’). Comes from Asia (Japan and China and South East Asia). Despite it’s look, it is not related to bamboo and wont take over your yard. Sporting lime green foliage, it grows to about 45cm in the garden, is great as a mass planting, and its other attraction is that in autumn its leaves turn red and orange, grows well in pots!
Acacia cognata (Wattle) Several forms are great for the garden, ‘Green Mist’, ‘Limelight’ or ‘River Cascade’. The stems are lovely weep down and form a rounded bush about 75cm tall and 1 metre wide. It’s great for pots or small hedges.
One of my favorites called Lomandra ‘Seascape’. With blue green foliage that looks fabulous. It would be terrific in a pot, or mass planted in the garden.
Coastal Rosemary It’s a low, rounded shrub, with wonderful mauve flowers. It’s a tough, hardy plant.
Pelargonium peltatum, commonly known as geranium. Goes well in pots, garden beds or balconies. These plants don’t need much water, but in a hanging basket water more than if it’s in the ground. The fabulous range of flower colours include pinks, mauves, rose and cerise pinks.