Drought Tolerant Plants

Water Wise Plant Selection

5 Great Plants for California Xeriscapes

A major part of design a drought proof garden is the plant selection. In Southern California, you need plants that can deal with hot dry weather, year round. While we definitely consider California native plants, we also incorporate other climate specific species that are not only water efficient, but look good year-round.


As a landscape designer, our concern is about more than just replacing your lawn…we want the landscape to match the style of your home and help create a beautiful drought-proof garden you can truly enjoy and be proud of! We will help guide you towards water wise plants whose shape, color, size, and variety help create a cohesive landscape masterpiece.

Birght orange flowers on an apricot mallow in a drought tolerant landscape

Apricot Mallow

The Apricot Mallow (aka Globemallow) is Perennial shrub native to parts of California. And like most California residents, this plant doesn’t like being wet or cold…and so Glendale is the perfect growing environment. Gentle sage color stems support vibrant orange flowers, providing a drought tolerant landscape with a splash of color.

Cluster of light pink flowers on a Big Sur Manzanita in a water effecient landscape

Big Sur Manzanita

As a low-maintenance, low-growing evergreen shrub, the Big Sur Manzanita provides excellent color and ground cover in a drought proof garden. The Manzanita attracts hummingbirds to its bundles of bell-shaped flowers that appear in late winter and spring. Other birds enjoy its fruit during the summer. It grows in a wide range of soils and requires very little water once established.

Purple flower clusters on a cleveland sage in a california friendly garden

Cleveland Sage

This fast-growing plant is native to the coast of southern California. Cleveland Sage (also known as Blue Sage or Fragrant Sage) loves hot dry coastal areas, is considered very drought tolerant, and its lavender blooms have a lovely fragrance on hot summer days. Hummingbirds are very attracted to its plentiful rounded flower clusters. During the summer, it’s recommended to water this plant no more than once-a-month, making it an excellent and colorful addition to a drought tolerant garden landscape.

Pink trumpet flowers blooming on Desert Willow in a drought proof garden

Desert Willow

With its showy, dark pink or purple streaked flowers and lacy foliage, the Desert Willow is an ornamental tree for small spaces in a drought tolerant landscape. Its fragrant trumpet-like flowers, which bloom May and June, are loved by hummingbirds. Though not a true willow tree, the Desert Willow takes its name from its slender willow-like leaves.

Vibrant red slender flowers on a California Fuchsia plant in a water wise alndscape

California Fuchsia

The California Fuchsia is beautiful species of willowherb native to the California foothills. This drought tolerant plant loves full sunlight, and blooms at the height or summer, revealing a host of bright red flowers. It is also known as the “Hummingbird Trumpet”, as hummingbirds are greatly attracted by its long, slender flowers.

Custom Creations for You

There are SO MANY options for creating and designing a drought proof landscape. If you want to discuss what KB5 Designs can do for you and your home…contact us for a free consultation!