Top 10 Plants for Sandy Soil
Since water runs right through sandy soil, the growing conditions are rather dry, even if the area gets a lot of rain. These 10 plants for sandy soil don’t seem to mind.
Cleome hassleriana • annual
Plant this tropical native in your garden and you’re sure to attract attention. The tall stems of these graceful plants are hard to miss, topped by wispy pink, purple or white blooms that look like a spider’s lanky legs.
Gazania • annual to Zone 8
This popular daisy produces a stunning array of colors in less-than-ideal conditions. Gazania is drought-tolerant, but it doesn’t appreciate a lack of sun. In fact, the flower heads close if the weather is too cloudy or cold.
Achillea • Zones 3 to 9
Lacy flower heads top each stem of yarrow. Varieties range from a short 6 inches to more than 4 feet tall. This hardy bloomer thrives in full sun and should be divided in spring for the optimal summer show.
Cosmos spp. • grown as an annual
Cosmos thrives in a variety of conditions. With cultivars that range from 1 to 6 feet high, it blooms from summer to late fall in shades of orange, red, yellow, pink, purple and white. The frondlike foliage beautifully complements the flowers’ delicate petals.
Rosa rugosa • Zones 2 to 9
Love roses but hate the hassle? This fast-growing variety flourishes anywhere without much fuss. Rugosa roses easily handle poor soil conditions, from sandy to salty. They have cupped, fragrant flowers, which appear as singles, doubles or in small clusters.
Eschscholzia californica • grown as an annual
The California poppy’s soft blooms almost seem to glow. Available in a rainbow of colors, these ardent self-seeders grow to just 15 inches high and wide.
Lavandula • Zones 5 to 10
Known for its namesake purple flowers, no-nonsense lavender is also available in white and pink varieties. The mounding plants range from 1 to 4 feet in diameter, often a bit taller than they are wide, and grow best in full sun.
Lagerstroemia indica • Zones 7 to 9
Crape myrtle is a year-round beauty in the South, where it thrives in the warmth and blooms from July to September. The flowers are spectacular, but the show isn’t over when summer ends: The elliptical foliage takes on brilliant reds, oranges and yellows. This tree is happiest if it’s planted in full sun.
Gaillardia spp. • Zones 3 to 10
Not only is blanket flower bright and cheery, it’s one tough plant. Tolerant of drought and a variety of soil conditions, including those on the sandier side, this is a standout in any sunny summer garden.
Penstemon spp. • Zones 3 to 10
Plant penstemon, and you’ll be singing the praises of this sturdy beauty in no time. Its tall, arching stems are laden with small, trumpet-shaped blossoms in purple, white, yellow, orange, red and pink. The plants do well in full sun to light shade.