A rock garden is a type of garden that uses gravel and rocks to create a dramatic and unusual backdrop for the plants. Some rock gardeners simply take advantage of rocky yards, while others actually bring in new rocks to create a rough, unhewn look. Rock gardens work best with plants that grow well on rocks or in loose, rocky, well-drained soil.
Acinos alpinus, or rock thyme, is a ground cover plant suitable for areas in your rock garden getting 6 or more hours of sun per day. Rock thyme is an evergreen suitable for growing in climates from zones 4-9, and produces bright flowers from purple to red from June through October. It Rock them from rugged Central and South European hillsides, and grows well in rocky soil with good drainage.
Black Mondo Grass
Suitable for growing in zones 7-10, black mondo grass (Ophiopogon planicapus) is a small, slow-spreading plant that grows well in conditions from partial sun to full shade. A rock garden plant which does well in rocky soil, black mondo grass is known for the small, lavender flowers it produces in late spring or early summer, the shiny berries it grows in fall, and its dramatic, black blades.
Himalayan Blue Poppy
With its rumpled, pale blue flowers and bright yellow center, the Himalayan blue poppy (Meconopsis betonicifolia) is guaranteed to make an impression in your rock garden. This 2-3 foot tall poppy plant likes a shady location and moist soil, which should not be allowed to dry completely. The Himalayan Blue Poppy is hardy to zones 4-5, and while technically a perennial, often only lives 1-2 years