10 Best Xeriscaping Plants for a Low-Water Garden

Boost the beauty of your landscape with plants that need only minimal water. 

Published February 10, 2023

Xeriscaping is a low-water approach to gardening. It involves choosing plants that won't require irrigation - or even much water at all. Xeriscaping plants are drought-resistant plants that need very little water. They're perfect to grow in drought-prone climates, as well as for gardeners who want to eliminate or reduce the need for irrigation.

Ready to put together your low-water garden? Get started with these drought-tolerant plants, each of which is perfect for a xeriscape yard. Be sure to choose ones that are hardy in your area so you won't have to re-plant every year.

Cape Leadwort


Cape leadwort (Plumbago auriculata), aka cape plumbago, is a flowering perennial that usually maxes out between three and four feet tall with a spread of three to six feet. This deciduous plant has beautiful blue blooms and attracts pollinators to areas where it's planted.



Echinacea (Echinacea purpurea), also known as purple coneflower, is a flowering perennial that's prized for its many benefits, including immune-boosting properties and ability to draw in pollinators. Echinacea is an upright clumping plant that grows to between two and four feet tall.

English Lavender


English lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) is an herbaceous perennial that usually reaches two to three feet tall with a spread of two to four feet. It produces purple flowers that are prized for their fragrance and medicinal properties.

False Indigo


False indigo (Baptisia australis) is an upright flowering perennial that's actually in the legume family (but you don't eat it). This showy plant usually reaches between three and four feet tall, with an equivalent spread. It produces beautiful purple flowers on spiky stems.

Mondo Grass


Mondo grass (Ophiopogon japonicus), aka dwarf lilyturf, is a great choice if you want an evergreen ground cover that pretty much looks like grass and spreads like grass, but requires much less water. It can get up to a foot tall and has a mounding growing habit.

Pink Muhly Grass


Pink muhly grass (Muhlenbergia capillaris) can grow up to three feet tall. Unlike many other types of grass, this ornamental perennial grass doesn't actually spread, but it forms clumps that can reach up to a foot wide. It produces pink and purple blooms during late summer and fall.

Pork and Beans Plant


Pork and beans plant (Sedum rubrotinctum), aka jelly bean plant, is a colorful succulent ground cover. This plant's unique bean-shaped foliage is a combination of green and red. It grows wider than it does tall. It usually stays around eight inches tall (or less), but can spread up to 15 inches wide.

Rose Mallow


Rose Mallow (Pavonia lasiopetala), aka rock rose or rose pavonia, is a compact perennial shrub that produces rose-colored flowers that look like small hibiscus blooms. The plant is woody on the bottom and leafy on the top. It usually grows to be about two feet tall and three feet wide.

Shore Juniper


Shore Juniper (Juniperus conferta) is a fast-growing ground cover with pointy, blue-green evergreen foliage that looks remarkably similar to the needles of juniper trees. This plant stays under 18" tall with a spread of six to eight feet wide.



Yarrow (Achillea millefolium) is a great pollinator to add to your low-water garden. This flowering perennial produces clusters of white flowers. It reaches about three feet tall and grows in mounds. This plant's leaves are lacy and look a bit like fern leaves.

Use the Best Xeriscaping Plants to Enjoy Maximum Beauty With Minimal Water


How does your garden grow? When the answer is 'with xeriscaping plants,' that means your garden is doing its thing without requiring costly or wasteful irrigation. You can add all the xeriscaping plants you want to your landscape, with no fear of having to be on the lookout for a giant water bill.

10 Best Xeriscaping Plants for a Low-Water Garden