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Plants That Do Well With Little Water

By T.M. Samuels ; Updated September 21, 2017

Plants that do well with little water are known as drought-tolerant. These are plants that can go 2-3 months without additional watering in a dry spell. Water-wise plants, frequently known as drought-tolerant plants, can help conserve our natural resources while still yielding a great-looking garden.

Common Goldenrod

Common Goldenrod, or Solidago odora, is from the Asteraceae/Compositae, or aster/daisy, family. It is a fast-growing perennial. It will get 2-5 feet tall with dark green 1-4 inch leaves. Golden yellow flowers come in summer. Plant a common goldenrod in full sun or semi-shade in poor sandy soil. Propagate via seed or by spring and fall clump division.

Globe Amaranth

Globe Amaranth, or Gomphrena globosa, is from the Amaranthaceae, or amaranth, family. It is a drought-tolerant annual that will attract butterflies to your garden. It will get 1-2 feet tall and 1 foot wide with 4-6 inch leaves. Flowers are 1 1/2 inches long in white, purple or pink. Plant a globe amaranth plant in full sun with regular watering. Propagate via seed in spring.

Lion's Ear

Lion’s Ear, or Leonotis nepetifolia, is from the Lamiaceae/Labiatae, or mint, family. It is an annual that is drought-tolerant and will attract hummingbirds into the garden. It can get 8 feet tall with smooth leaves 2-5 inches long. Orange flowers are 2-4 inches wide and tubular. Plant a lion’s ear plant in full sun or intermittent shade with regular watering. Propagate via seed.

Tall Cigar Plant

Tall Cigar Plant, or Cuphea micropetala, is from the Lythraceae, or loosestrife, family. It is an annual that attracts butterflies and hummingbirds to the garden. It gets 3-4 feet tall with the same width. Leaves are 6 inches long with tube-like, orange-red flowers 1 1/2 inches long. Plant a tall cigar plant in full sun with midday sun protection and regular watering. Propagate via root division or stem tips in spring.


Cassava, or Manihot esculenta, is from the Euphorbiaceae, or spurge, family. It is a perennial. It will have up to 24-inch-long leaf stems and can reach up to 20 feet tall. Plant a cassava in poor soil with full morning sun and afternoon shade. Propagate via stem segments.

Pink Evening Primrose

Pink Evening Primrose, or Oenothera speciosa, is from the Onagraceae, or evening primrose, family. It is a fragrant perennial that attracts hummingbirds. It will get 8-24 inches high with a 15-inch spread. Flowers are bowl-shaped and 2 inches wide. Flower color varies. Plant a pink evening primrose in poor well drained soil with full sun. Propagate via seed in fall or early spring or by root clump division in spring.


About the Author


T.M. Samuels has been a freelance writer since 1993. She has published works in "Arthritis Today," "Alabama Living" and "Mature Years," and is the author of a gardening book. Samuels studied pre-medicine at Berry College.