Shrubs For Dry Climates: What Are Some Zone 7 Drought Tolerant Bushes


By: Teo Spengler

If you live in USDA plant hardiness zone 7 and are seeking shrubs with drought tolerance, you are in luck. For suggestions for zone 7 drought tolerant bushes for your garden or backyard, read on.

Shrubs for Dry Climates

Weather seems less predictable every day and it’s impossible for anyone to say with certainty whether next year will bring rain or drought to zone 7 regions. If your area has suffered from droughts in the past, it makes sense to fill your garden with shrubs for dry climates.

However, don’t forget that you’ll need to pick shrubs with drought tolerance that will thrive in the conditions your garden provides. Consider whether the planting sites are in sun or shade, are exposed to or protected from wind, and the type of soil available.

Also remember that drought tolerant shrubs for zone 7 develop the ability to withstand drought over time as they establish. Newly transplanted shrubs are not immediately drought tolerant and will need irrigation for at least the first growing season.

Zone 7 Drought Tolerant Bushes

In zone 7, the lowest winter temperatures average between 0 degrees and 10 degrees Fahrenheit (-18 to -12 C.). Many evergreen shrubs with drought tolerance thrive in these growing conditions, including evergreen flowering shrubs like rosemary and sage. If you want zone 7 drought tolerant bushes that are evergreen, consider glossy abelia, with its shiny green leaves and frothy flowers. It grows to 6 feet (2 m.) tall.

Alternatively, boxwood is an excellent, dense shrub for edging and borders. Most types of juniper also do well in this zone and handle drought with ease.

For taller evergreen shrubs for dry climates, take a look at Aucuba japonica. You’ll get bright berries on female aububas if a male is planted in the vicinity. Aucubas prefer shade and rise to 10 feet (3 m.) tall.

Bottlebrush are also zone 7 drought tolerant bushes that grow to 10 feet (3 m.) tall. The shrubs need a sunny location to produce the red flowers that look a little like brushes used to clean bottles.

Deciduous shrubs are those that lose their plants in the fall. One of the most popular drought tolerant shrubs for zone 7 is the butterfly bush. Its vivid panicles of flowers really do bring butterflies to your yard.

Another of the best deciduous shrubs for dry climates is beautyberry, a perennial shrub that grows to 6 feet (2 m.) tall. The bush offers bright spring flowers followed by fall berries. This shrub is also pest and disease resistant.

For fragrance, go with lilac bushes. They can grow quite large and require a minimum of six hours a day of sunlight.

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Drought-Tolerant Shrubs

Something to consider when choosing shrubs is leaf size. Shrubs with smaller leaves tend to lose less water than shrubs with larger leaves, making them more suited for low-water conditions.

Succulents are also a great choice. Some examples include agave, yucca and Texas sotol. Yucca is an ornamental succulent with white flowers. Agave have tall, spiky blooms. The Texas sotall makes a great screen or hedge.

Bottlebrush is a leafy shrub that can grow quite tall and wide. It flowers in cycles from spring to early fall. Hummingbirds love the blooms.

Holly is another great drought-tolerant shrub that has deep green waxy leaves with dark red berries that appear later in the season.


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