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Want a beautiful but low-maintenance garden? Texas tough natives get the job done!

Figuring out just the right plants for your landscape can be a daunting task. How to choose when there are so many? Selecting plants that are both water-wise and well-adapted to our Texas climate is a good place to start. We have some of these tough, unique and hard to find natives arriving at the garden center this week. Each are the perfect addition to a beautiful but low-maintenance landscape.

100_4160A residential landscape installation that blends both native and adapted shrubs and perennials. In this photo, Mexican Feather Grass, Nassella tenuissima; 'Jethro Tull' Coreopsis, Coreopsis lanceolata x 'Jethro Tull'; and various Salvias create a harmonius perennial foundation.

Agarita, Mahonia (Berberis) trifoliata, is a beautiful Texas native shrub that offers up foliage, flower, fragrance and food interest. The leaves of this shrub resemble miniature holly leaves in a striking gray-green color:

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They contrast beautifully with the fragrant yellow blooms in spring. The flowers are followed by bright red berries that are irresistible to garden birds. You can also make jelly from the delicious fruit. Best in full sun with well-drained soil. Grows to 6-feet tall and wide.

Coralberry, Symphoricarpos orbiculatus, is also called Indian currant because of its beautiful berries. This low growing ground-cover like plant is perfect for shady wooded areas that have a natural feel:

Coralberry3

Plants are deciduous but offer up blazing red fall color. Bright raspberry colored fruit adorns plants all winter long. This Texas native is very tolerant of drought and poor soils. Grows to 3-4 feet tall and wide.

Texas Kidneywood, Eysenhardtia texana, is an airy shrub with spikes of fragrant white flowers from spring through fall. Foliage is feathery and smells of tangerine when crushed:

Eysenhardtia

Plants can grow to 10-feet tall and can be trained into the shape of a small tree. Plants are drought tolerant and need well-drained soil. Plant in a sunny to part-shade location.

Germander Sage, Salvia chamaedryoides, offers up the bluest of blue flowers! That elusive color can be found in abundance with this Texas tough salvia:

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This compact mounding perennial also sports gorgeous silver foliage. Quite the color combination! Plant this beauty in your sunniest and drier parts of the garden. Growing to 18-inches tall and 3-feet wide, it’s the perfect companion to other sun-loving perennials like black-eyed susan and Mexican feather grass.

You can find more information on these and our other native plant offerings at The Ladybird Johnson Wildflower Center's web site

Join us this weekend, Saturday April 12th from 11am to noon for Texas Tough Perennials–learn about these plants and more from Rusty E. Allen, TCNP and NHG Garden Advisor. See you soon!

This Post Has 2 Comments
  1. I do have Argarita in my garden but my mother suggested to cut it down because it doesn’t complement with the plot. On the other hand, I want to have this Germander Sage. I think It would be perfect for the other side of my garden. Thanks for the post. And Oh, would you mind posting any other flowering plants you know. I would appreciate it. Thanks.

  2. Jenkinson – We love Agarita…sorry to hear you gave yours up! The germander sage is just gorgeous and super low maintenance. The bright blue color is stunning. There are TONS of other well-adapted low-water use plants for Texas gardens. We’ll post more soon – in the meantime, come by and see us at the garden center!

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