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Low maintenance tough shrubs for dry sandy soil & full Sun

Here is a cross section of tough shrubs that will tolerate dry exposed planting locations and conditions, as well as poor sandy or drought prone soils. There are some common features associated with shrubs that will tolerate drought, these features will often help shrubs flourish in drought prone dry and sunny planting conditions. Many waxy leaved conifers will tolerate a sunny dry spot, as will other evergreens that have tough moisture retentive foliage. Silvery foliage plants have tiny water conserving hairs, which protect the plant against drought as well as give it a silver appearance. Many plants with very thick rubbery leaves will also tolerate dry conditions as they can retain hold moisture within the leaf.

If you are planting in an exposed position it is always sensible to stake and tie trees securely and always improve dry sandy impoverished soils by digging in plenty of planting compost and fertilizer into the planting pit. Laying a surface mulch of compost above the soil to help conserve any moisture within the soil, giving the young plant a good start, and always water in a plant immediately after planting and carry on watering regularly while young plants are establishing.

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Latin &
Common Name
EarmarkType & FormFlowers & Foliage
Elaeagnus angustifolia - Russian OliveElaeagnus angustifolia

Russian Olive
Shrub, Hedging & Screening, Rounded - BushYellow flowers (Summer, scented)
Ceanothus arboreus - Trewithen Blue - Californian LilacCeanothus arboreus

'Trewithen Blue'

Californian Lilac
Shrub, Container-friendly, Rounded - BushDark blue flowers (Summer, scented)
Cistus cobariensisCistus cobariensis Shrub, Ground cover, Container-friendly, SpreadingWhite flowers (Summer)
Artemisia ludoviciana - Silver Queen - ArtemisiaArtemisia ludoviciana

Silver Queen

Shrub, Herbs, Ground cover, Culinary, Container-friendly, Rounded - BushYellow flowers (Summer, scented)
Helianthemum The Bride - Rock RoseHelianthemum The Bride

Rock Rose
Shrub, Ground cover, Alpine, Container-friendly, SpreadingWhite flowers (Summer)
Salvia officinalis - SageSalvia officinalis

Shrub, Herbs, Ground cover, Culinary, Container-friendly, SpreadingLight blue flowers (Summer)
Hibiscus syriacus - Oiseau Bleu - Cotton RoseHibiscus syriacus

'Oiseau Bleu'

Cotton Rose
Shrub, Rounded - BushNon-flowering
Brachyglottis greyi - BrachyglottisBrachyglottis greyi

Shrub, Rounded - ClumpYellow flowers (Summer early)
Rosmarinus officinalis - Sissinghurst Blue - RosemaryRosmarinus officinalis

'Sissinghurst Blue'

Shrub, Herbs, Hedging & Screening, Culinary, Container-friendly, Rounded - BushDark blue flowers (Summer)
Myrtus communis - Myrtle, MyrtusMyrtus communis

Myrtle, Myrtus
Shrub, Non-flowering

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Have you seen our other plant top ten recommendations?