Best Landscape Pants for Dry Areas

Plant beginning to grow through dry and brittle earth.

Nothing is as inviting as sitting in your garden watching the butterflies and sipping sweet iced tea.

As you and your professional designer are planning your landscape, remember that ALL newly installed plants, whether they are trees, flowering shrubs, or tiny pansies, need water – maybe even irrigation – during the first months after planting.

Plants come in different shapes and sizes, just like all other living things. How much and how fast they will grow will be just like people: nature and nurture. Some are tall and thin, some are medium-sized, and some will always be short and plump. But their adult size will also be determined by how well you raise them. They need food, water, sun, and fresh air.

In many cases, it’s wise to plant in the fall, as it may be impossible to give your new landscape enough water through the heat of the summer.

It’s been a rainy season for many across the country. Do you ever find it fascinating and somewhat unfair that some areas should get buckets of rain while others seem to crawl through the desert toward a mirage, stopping only to shrivel up like a worm on the sidewalk? Some areas are just dry or going through a drought.

While it’s not always dry, Oklahoma has experienced its droughts – the longest lasting for five years, from 2010 to 2015.

It helps to know what a drought is. Since water can come from the atmosphere and ground and surface sources, there’s a drought if there’s not enough water. People who live in drought-prone areas can tell you that a lack of rain can be downright catastrophic, especially when it’s hot. And don’t even think of watering a garden during a drought.

In T.S. Eliot’s poem “The Wasteland,” he writes, “What are the roots that clutch, what branches grow out of this stony rubbish?”

Take heart: some plants survive brutal heat and thrive without constant watering, making them a good choice for planting in dry areas.


Bosnian Pine – This is an aesthetically pleasing evergreen that does fine in dry soil and tends to enjoy a long life, as it is not prone to diseases.

Blue Ice Cypress – Another evergreen that does well in Oklahoma is the Blue Ice Cypress; it doesn’t typically fall victim to heat and wind. Don’t be fooled by this tall guy’s skinny physique, however. It will fill out soon enough.

Holly Evergreen – The opposite of lace-like, this one is dense in stature. And even though the berries are red, giving it the impression that it’s had its big long drink, it’s resistant to dryness. Are you decorating for the Christmas season? You’ll want to reach for these branches.

Ask our landscape designers which ones will grow happily in dry conditions.


Here are some ideas for shrubs that won’t snub the dry conditions:

Sumac – A native shrub that can grow up to 20 feet tall. They have large flower clusters that brighten during the fall and last through winter.

Chinese Quince – Hold the water, bring on the sun. The Chinese Quince is a gorgeous red-flowering bush that can reach up to 5 feet.


Annuals are plants that die after one growing season. Here is some of the annuals that grow well in dry areas:

Firecracker flower – Appropriately named for its vibrant yellow/orange petals; this is a versatile plant, bursting with color, that enjoys shade and full sun exposure. You will find the firecracker flower is adaptable to flower beds, containers, the porch, and even inside the house.

Red Yucca – If you enjoy hummingbirds, this is the foliage for you, especially if you enjoy the color coral. The lovely flowers are located on long stems with slight curves and lend themselves to large congregations that do well in full sun.

Phlox, Volcano series – If there’s a paintbrush in nature, it spent some time on this one. Its petals can range from pinkish, blue, lavender, purple, and even white, the deeper hues blending into the lighter colors. Most soils are friendly to the phlox, which enjoys full sun.


Choosing perennials is a way to keep your plants around for more than two years.

Coneflower – Not quite a daisy, but constructed in much the same way with petals around a center, this pretty flower is also called Echinacea. Don’t plant this one where it will get too wet – it likes plenty of drainage, making it a good choice for dry summers.

Blanket Flowers – Let the sun shine on Oklahoma; the blanket flowers are here with every ounce of red and yellow wildflower radiance.

Japanese Painted Fern – For those who wonder how Mother Nature did that, there’s the Japanese Painted Fern. With purplish stems and green leaves brushed with silverish foliage, this lovely plant can grow to a full eighteen inches and makes a good filler plant. So go ahead, fill in the blanks.

Of course, there are hundreds of plants you can grow successfully in dry areas. Whether or not you consider yourself to have a green thumb doesn’t always matter because there are some plants you can’t kill, no matter how hard you try.

So go ahead: roll up your sleeves. Then again, if gardening is not your fancy, it might be best to leave it to the experts. At Perimeter Landscape, we know which plants will keep you busy for hours and which ones require minimal effort on your part. With the summer sun beating down and drying out the soil, don’t fall victim to a wasteland. Give us a call and let us help you design your gardenscape today.