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A favorite of our grandmothers and great-grandmothers, hens-and-chicks are popular once again with gardeners looking for drought-tolerant, easy care plants. Darlings of today's xeriscape gardens, trough gardens, and rooftop gardens, these plants are appreciated for their easy care and tolerance for extremely dry conditions. The neat rosettes multiply freely by runners that form dense colonies. Flowering rosettes die after bloom time, but are quickly replaced. They are excellent between pavers on patios and walkways.
Under 6 inches
1 foot wide
garden plans for Hens-and-chicks
more varieties for Hens-and-chicks
(Sempervivum 'Bronco') is a vigorous selection that offers green foliage with purple-red edges. It grows 4 inches tall and 10 inches wide. Zones 5-10
Cobweb Buttons hens-and-chicks
(Sempervivum 'Cobweb Buttons') is a distinct selection that has fuzzy leaf tips; the hairs catch on the new growth for a spiderweb effect. It grows 4 inches tall and 10 inches wide. Zones 5-10
plant Hens-and-chicks with
Yarrow is one of those plants that give a wildflower look to any garden. In fact, it is indeed a native plant and, predictably, it's easy to care for. In some gardens, it will thrive with almost no care, making it a good candidate for naturalistic plantings in open areas and along the edges of wooded or other wild places.Its colorful, flat-top blooms rise above clusters of ferny foliage. The tough plants resist drought, are rarely eaten by deer and rabbits, and spread moderately quickly, making yarrow a good choice for massing in borders or as a groundcover. If deadheaded after its first flush of blooms fade, yarrow will rebloom. If left to dry on the plant, flower clusters of some types provide winter interest. Flowers of yarrow are excellent either in fresh or dried arrangements.
If you have a hot, dry spot with excellent drainage, you must give thrift a try. A small, tidy plant, it covers itself with adorable bobbing pink flowers. It's a charming groundcover, edging plant, or rock garden feature. When planted in large groups, it forms a mat of attractive grassy foliage and colorful marble-size balls of flowers.Also called sea pink, this tough plant tolerates wind, sea spray, and is drought-tolerant. They do need well-drained soil to prevent root rot.
Sedums are nearly the perfect plants. They look good from the moment they emerge from the soil in spring and continue to look fresh and fabulous all growing season long. Many are attractive even in winter when their foliage dies and is left standing. They're also drought-tolerant and need very little if any care. They're favorites of butterflies and useful bees. The tall types are outstanding for cutting and drying. Does it get better than that? Only in the fact that there are many different types of this wonderful plant, from tall types that will top 2 feet to low-growing groundcovers that form mats. All thrive in full sun with good drainage. Ground cover types do a good job of suppressing weeds, but seldom tolerate foot traffic. Some of the smaller ones are best grown in pots or treated as houseplants.