Our gardens must evolve in the face of climate change. The drought of the soil, the rainfall deficit of the first months of 2022 are unfortunately there to remind us of this.
There are, fortunately, many plants capable of withstanding drought without being specifically dry ground plants. Aurélien Davroux is the author of the book All drought resistant plants. A book written because, even in Hauts-de-France, some plantations are no longer suitable to the current situation.
“The objective of the book is to offer species capable of withstanding a certain summer drought and cultivable outside the Mediterranean areas, including north of the Loire.
My test garden is located in Pas-de-Calais. And I am faced with the reality: some plants are no longer suitable. There are many books on Mediterranean plants but relatively few references on plants that withstand both temporary droughts and cold, all in “normal” garden soils.
“Even in the North of France, many plants start to head in summer”.Aurélien Davroux, gardener and author
Plants that tolerate drought have developed anatomical and physiological peculiarities. Bulbs such as tulips, daffodils, crocuses bloom in spring before disappearing in summer to preserve themselves and reappear the following year. Other plants use different tactics.
“There are really very recognizable plants. Plants with very small leaves, leaves that are a little silvery or a little shiny will often be plants capable of repelling the rays of the sun and thus better resisting high heat.
Other plants that have a cushion habit such as Spanish turf (Armeria maritima)for example, or houseleeks (Jovibarba) will better resist evaporation and various climatic hazards.
Growers and nurseries are constantly looking for plants capable of adapting. So there are more and more of them. And we, Aurélien and I, have a big weakness for California poppy (Eschscholzia californica).
“It is really bright orange, whereas most poppies are more in red or coral tones. This orange remains the best known, even if you can now find bright red varieties. The foliage is very pretty, blue-green, quite cut out.”
If you no longer know what to plant in your garden or pots, I advise you to read this book “All plants supporting drought”, by Aurélien Davroux published by Ulmer. You will find 450 plants suitable for all regions.