6. Sedum - common name: Stonecrop
|Sedum 'Autumn Joy'|
I think some of the Sedums in my yard live practically on air - I certainly don't water them! I have some Sedum thriving on top of a green-roofed birdhouse. I have some growing in the cracks of my driveway. (I'm guessing it grew from a piece of Sedum that fell off the birdhouse when I tipped it over once.) The only Sedums I have that don't flower well are the ones growing in my swampy side yard.
7. Agastache - common names: Anise Hyssop, Hummingbird Mint
|Agastache 'Grape Nectar'|
I resisted planting Agastache for a long time, despite all the wonderful things I had heard about it. The reason? The leaves are said to smell like licorice, which I hate. But I finally planted some, and the plants lived up to all the hype - they are tough, hardy plants, and the hummingbirds love them. And I was thrilled to find that the leaves didn't smell exactly like licorice either. Instead the scent is so pleasing that occasionally you may find me out in the garden petting and smelling my Agastaches.
8. Aclepias tuberosa - common name: Butterfly Weed
"Here you go. Plant this in your garden. It's a butterfly weed." Another gardener pulled what looked like a dried-up carrot out of her garden and handed it to me. "Uh, okay," I said and later stuck it in my garden at the top of a hill and promptly forgot about it - until summertime, that is, when I was stopped in my tracks at the bright orange flowers. Now it's a must-have in my garden. This plant likes it sunny and dry, and, of course, the added attraction is that you will likely end up with some baby Monarchs if you plant them.
9. Nepeta - common names: Catmint, Catnip
As I am writing this, I am shocked that I haven't brought any of my Nepeta inside to see what my cats' reactions will be to it. Known for having a smell that is attractive to cats, Nepeta is also known for prospering in those sunny, dry spots that are a death knell to so many other plants. Note: some of them may even prosper a little too much. They are in the mint family, after all!
10. Coreopsis - common name: Tickseed
|Coreopsis 'Full Moon'|
This tough native is one of the flowers in which the Latin name is usually used instead of the common name (well, would you want to be called 'Tickseed'?) Perennial Coreopsis are prolific bloomers, and they are often included in highway beautification programs. Hey, if it will grow in a highway median, it will probably grow anywhere, right?
This concludes my list of 10 plants that have thrived in those scorching hot, dry spots in my North Carolina garden, even if they might not truly grow in Hell (I suspect Hell is full of crabgrass).
What plants would you pick to add to the list?