10 Ornamental Plants For Poor Soil. Flowers For Sandy Soil. List With Names And Photos

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10 Ornamental Plants For Poor Soil. Flowers For Sandy Soil. List With Names And Photos
10 Ornamental Plants For Poor Soil. Flowers For Sandy Soil. List With Names And Photos

Video: 10 Ornamental Plants For Poor Soil. Flowers For Sandy Soil. List With Names And Photos

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Video: 9 plants for sandy soil 2023, January

Depleted and sandy soil is not the most favorable environment for growing spectacular ornamental plants. The lack of nutrients, regardless of the cause of this problem, forces us to use only the most hardy and unassuming species in the design of garden plots, surprising with their modest needs. But the correct selection of crops allows you to create colorful landscaping even in such conditions. From “wild” perennials to brightly colored annuals and fashionable shrubs, the list of plants for poor soil is very significant.

Flowers for poor soil
Flowers for poor soil


  • Poor soil characteristics
  • Features of landscaping poor soils
  • 10 favorites for flower beds and beds on poor soil
  • Other plants for poor soil

Poor soil characteristics

Barren, depleted, poor soil are terms that almost any gardener and gardener are afraid of. But more often than not, they are not at all such a big problem as it seems. Soil depletion occurs only as a result of improper use. The lack of measures to restore fertility, fertilizing and mandatory treatments can lead to the same consequences as the natural features of the soil with a structure that is not able to retain nutrients and water.

Poor garden soils are different. Depending on what exactly is the "source" of infertility, they are divided into two types:

  1. Oppressed or misused. These are originally high-quality and fertile soils that have suffered from their irresponsible use. Like any other garden soil, such soil is restored thanks to the introduction of the correct fertilizers and high-quality processing, changes in processing methods.
  2. Natural poor soils. These include sandy or stony soils, which, along with excellent heating and water permeability, also have unpleasant characteristics - the inability to retain both water and nutrients.

Soil correction, preparation for planting and measures to improve structure, composition and characteristics help to cope with any problem. For depleted soil, especially if the decrease in fertility is associated with the neglected state of plantings or the absence of any treatment for several seasons, the restoration process sometimes has to be extended over several years. But if you wish, you can correct and update any garden soil.

Restore soil fertility with:

  • organic fertilizers embedded in the soil or used as mulch;
  • green manure plants;
  • biological products and microbiological fertilizers;
  • peat and high-quality substrate;
  • rough organic materials (from sawdust and crushed bark to dry leaves and cut grass);
  • soil conditioners and soil improvement preparations;
  • complete mineral fertilizers.

The soil does not always need to be improved. In the process of creating a decorative garden, flower beds, rabatki, groups and other ensembles, infertility is not at all a contraindication to landscaping. It's just that poor soils are one of the special cases that require an equally special approach. If we are not talking about the characteristics of the entire site, but only about individual zones or small territories, then there is no need to carry out drastic measures to improve the soil (it happens that there is simply no such opportunity), it is worth assessing the prospects for using such sites for growing special plants and creating unique objects. After all, as the foundations of gardening art say, there is no such thing as "wrong" or "right" conditions on the site - there are only drawbacks in the planning and selection of plants. And the choice is so greatthat even for the specific task of landscaping poor soil, you can find your ideal solution.

Flower garden on poor soil
Flower garden on poor soil

Features of landscaping poor soils

When faced with the problem of poor soil, they are often the first to seek solutions to change its characteristics. But if you want to use your chance to create an original decoration of the site and use the initial conditions wisely, then there will be as many options as strategies for improving the soil.

On poor soil, you can equip:

  • alpine slide;
  • rockery;
  • rocky flower garden;
  • dry stream and other water bodies or their imitations;
  • steppe corner;
  • imitation of the prairie;
  • resting area surrounded by plants;
  • a flower garden imitating wild plantings;
  • landscape array;
  • a clearing of ground cover with large accented plants;
  • a flowerbed or mixborder that does not require maintenance;
  • herb garden.

And whichever option you choose, the main thing is to choose the right plants for solving your problem. After all, it is the decorative cultures that are able to revive any corner, breathe life into the most boring area and turn their main problem into the real pride of the owners of the garden.

Choosing plants that can please the eye even on poor soil is not as difficult as it might seem.… If you take a closer look at the best garden herbaceous perennials and shrubs, then there are quite a lot of species that can do with completely modest soil, which also have enviable drought resistance or are afraid of waterlogging. When selecting candidates for a place in a flower garden, rabatka or rocky garden, it is always better to be guided by these three parameters. Crops that are afraid of excess fertilizers and abundant irrigation feel especially good in poor soil. If the soil on your site is sandy, then you need to look for plants that prefer laying drainage when planting. True, you should be prepared for the fact that almost all candidates for the design of infertile soil are cultures from among those who prefer sunny places. Of the shade-tolerant and shade-loving species, only exceptional plants can come to terms with poor soil.

10 favorites for flower beds and beds on poor soil

1. Gaillardia grandiflora (Gaillardia x grandiflora)

The most popular decorative forms and varieties of the brightest perennial Gaillardia are united under this name. She easily becomes the main summer star of any composition with her brightly colored, yellow-red-brown “circles” covered with baskets and modest lanceolate leaves.

Compact varieties of half a meter in height are found as often as larger varieties up to 70-80 cm high.The beauty of the Gaillardia color is preserved even on the poorest soil, but the duration of flowering, starting in early summer, will directly depend on the quality of care: only 2- 3 dressings per season will allow this plant to bloom as well as when planted in fertile soil. Gaillardia prefer dry and light soils and are excellent candidates for poor sandy soils.

Gaillardia grandiflora (Gaillardia x grandiflora)
Gaillardia grandiflora (Gaillardia x grandiflora)

2. Oregano (Origanum vulgare)

This plant rightfully claims to be the most underestimated of herbaceous perennials. Oregano is often perceived only as a medicinal and spicy plant, and meanwhile, in the ability to grow in any conditions and at the same time preserve beauty, it has no equal.

Oregano forms charmingly dense bushes ranging in height from 30 cm to half a meter, the density and size of which can be easily controlled by pruning. The rich color of small rounded leaves emphasizes the beauty of the lace cords of the inflorescences, which do not lose their beauty even after drying. Oregano creates texture spots, it is fragrant, adds volume to compositions, looks elegant regardless of the season. It is one of the most versatile plants in the modern landscape design arsenal. It is also suitable for depleted and neglected soil.

Oregano (Origanum vulgare)
Oregano (Origanum vulgare)

3. Common goldenrod (Solidago virgaurea)

It is one of the most variable herbaceous perennials, not only in size, flowering and growth patterns, but also in terms of requirements for the place of cultivation. The most humble natural species of goldenrod, also known as the golden rod or autumn mimosa, adapts perfectly to even the most scarce soils and can grow in both heavy and light soil (unlike other species of goldenrod).

The dense branching of straight shoots allows goldenrod to create stunningly beautiful arrays from 60 cm to more than 2 m in height. Lanceolate leaves are arranged alternately, they stand out in a rather dark color. Complex panicles and clusters of inflorescences are remembered thanks to small but beautiful baskets with a bright yellow-golden tone of reed flowers. Goldenrod blooms late and is one of the best autumn perennials that can grow in very difficult conditions.

Common goldenrod (Solidago virgaurea)
Common goldenrod (Solidago virgaurea)

4. Steller's wormwood (Artemisia stelleriana)

The favorite of the design of rocky gardens, the best accompaniment for gravel filling, the most hardy ground cover species - these are the epithets that the magnificent and compact perennial type of wormwood deserves.

Steller's wormwood forms a dense covering of outstretched half-meter shoots and attracts even from a distance with luxurious carved silvery leaves, which seem to glow against the background of stones. Loose inflorescences, consisting of small yellowish baskets, can hide all the beauty of the plant, so it is better not to allow its flowering. Exceptional drought resistance and the disclosure of the beauty of the silver edge only on poor soils makes this plant, like other wormwood, a favorite for the design of depleted, stony and sandy soils.

Steller's wormwood (Artemisia stelleriana)
Steller's wormwood (Artemisia stelleriana)

5. Eryngium planum and Eryngium bourgatii

Most of the erythematosus, despite their invulnerable appearance, still achieve the greatest decorative effect on fertile soil. But the flat-leaved erythematosus and Bourget's erythematosus are an exception to the rule. They are able to grow in the densest or poorest soils, showing full blue only when there is a lack of nutrients.

Eryngium planum (Eryngium planum) - beautiful perennial meter height from the top of branching shoots and stiff thin sheet, wherein the attention attracted ovate head inflorescence diameter of up to 2 cm.

Feverweed Bourget (Eryngium bourgatii) - contender for the title of the most unpretentious feverweed. At a height of up to 40 cm, it forms wide, sometimes lodging bushes, flaunts bluish, with a white edge, strongly dissected leaves and luminous round heads of inflorescences with very large leaves of the envelope. The plant is amazingly catchy and hardy at the same time.

Eryngium planum
Eryngium planum

6. Violet mullein (Verbascum phoeniceum)

Among the large herbaceous perennials with powerful vertical inflorescences, perhaps only the mullein prefers not nutritious, but poor soil. This is a special plant in every sense. On poor soil, hybrid mullein and other species grow and develop perfectly, but the absolute favorite is the purple mullein.

At a height of up to 1 m, this plant with powerful straight shoots and large basal leaves surprises with the beauty of simple but large clusters of inflorescences. Graceful flowers with a lilac corolla are a true decoration of this large plant. It is difficult to imagine any garden without mullein blooming in the first half of summer.

Purple Mullein (Verbascum phoeniceum)
Purple Mullein (Verbascum phoeniceum)

7. Yarrow (Achillea)

Even the most spectacular varieties of hybrid yarrow remain one of the most unpretentious garden plants. This perennial grows well in any soil, even when it comes to depleted soil. The exquisite colors of the large inflorescences of the best modern varieties offer cherry, coral, orange, golden hues. But the species yarrows are also very good, even if their flowering is more modest.

Pillow-shaped yarrows on poor soils show their characteristics especially clearly. All yarrows are easily recognizable. These are perennials that form dense sods with numerous straight shoots, alternate whole or feathery leaves and are collected in dense shields, umbrellas and clusters of inflorescences in small baskets. Blooming yarrows give the compositions layering and structure.

Yarrow (Achillea millefolium)
Yarrow (Achillea millefolium)

8. Ajuga

All representatives of this genus surprise with their ability to grow even in the most inappropriate conditions, sometimes radically different in their characteristics of soils. The tenacious bloom reaches the greatest decorative effect in the nutrient soil, but they better show the beauty of the leaves and original colors on poor soil. Creeping shoots, rooting in the axils of the leaves, allow the survivors to effectively fill the soil.

Stolon shoots are usually hidden under decorative leaves, collected in rosettes. Large, usually with a beautiful jagged edge, Ayuga offer a huge selection of unusual - dark, chocolate purple and ink - colors. Flowers in spike-shaped inflorescences are decorative due to their intense blue-violet colors. Plants are very different from each other, but they always look like luxurious and original decorative deciduous wilds that can take root anywhere.

Tenacious (Ajuga)
Tenacious (Ajuga)

9. Sedum

Dividing all sedum plants into two groups - preferring poor or nutritious soils - makes it easy to find luxurious plants for growing in all types of infertile soils. Preferring stony, sandy and sandy loam soils, stonecrops of the first group are low ground cover species with bright color of fleshy leaves and abundant flowering

From spectacular stonecrops hybrid (Sedum hybridum) with its flat tapered leaves and high umbrellas inflorescences yellow-orange color to a low evergreen mats white stonecrops (Sedum album) and similar prickly snake shoots stonecrops pale yellow (Sedum ochroleucum) - choose a few …

Sedum, or sedum (Sedum)
Sedum, or sedum (Sedum)

10. Common meadowsweet (Filipendula vulgaris)

It is one of the most undemanding (and least moisture-loving) species of meadowsweet. Common meadowsweet is a powerful, delicate and very effective perennial that looks great both during flowering and after. Height from 40 cm to 1 m allows the meadowsweet to easily fit into any composition.

Cirro-dissected, lacy large leaves create a luxurious root rosette, emphasizing the beauty of flowering. Large creamy or white flowers are collected in dense panicles of inflorescences capable of reaching 15 cm in length. Meadowsweet bloom in late spring, delighting with luxurious flowering foam for almost a month. But the leaves of the plant continue to decorate the composition further.

Common meadowsweet (Filipendula vulgaris)
Common meadowsweet (Filipendula vulgaris)

Other plants for poor soil

The list of perennials that are excellent at coping with nutritional deficiencies is not limited to the above-mentioned top ten. In poor and sandy soils, many species of perennials associated with landscape design also thrive.

In poor soils, they perform well:

  • oak sage (Salvia x sylvestris);
  • tansy (Tanacetum);
  • mordovnik ordinary (Echinops ritro) and other types of mordovnikov;
  • all types of perennial and annual poppies (representatives of the genus Papaver);
  • alpine aquilegia (Aquilegia alpina), fan-shaped (Aquilegia flabellata), green-flowered (Aquilegia viridiflora), dark (Aquilegia atrata);
  • pearl anaphalis (Anaphalis margaritaceae);
  • cornflowers large-headed (Centaurea macrocephala), mountain (Centaurea montana), Russian (Centaurea ruthenica);
  • Kermek Tatar (Goniolimon tataricum);
  • leathery adonis (Silene coronaria, better known under the name of crown lichen);
  • sunflower heliopsis (Heliopsis helianthoides);
  • evening primrose (Oenothera fruticosa);
  • gypsophila paniculata (Gypsophila paniculata);
  • medicinal hyssop (Hyssopus officinalis);
  • Macleaya cordata (Macleaya cordata);
  • all types of monarda (Monarda), subject to feeding during the season;
  • all types of Mediterranean herbs - from thyme and tarragon to lavender and rosemary.
Cosmeya, or Cosmos (Cosmos)
Cosmeya, or Cosmos (Cosmos)
Kermek Tatar (Goniolimon tataricum)
Kermek Tatar (Goniolimon tataricum)

The selection of annuals that feel good in the most difficult conditions is also quite rich. Sandy, dense or poorly fertile neglected soils are not at all contraindicated for growing bright-blooming seasonal stars. These annuals include:

  • cosmos with its airiness, carved foliage, quivering bright pastel flowers; cheerful and uniquely gentle, but also striking in its endurance;
  • an original and bright annual with a dazzling color of touching flowers large-flowered purslane (Portulaca grandiflora);
  • the original blooming beauty Cleome, able to cope with any drought;
  • arctotis (Arctotis), whose flowers in terms of the brightness of colors and structure would resemble a gerbera, if not for the grace of the touching plants themselves;
  • annual Anacyclus flaunting inflorescences so similar to chamomile;
  • able to decorate any garden under any conditions calendula (Calendula officinalis);
  • never out of fashion marigolds (Tagetes);
  • undersized, up to 30 cm in height, forming a beautiful mass of dark leaves and large golden baskets with a watercolor transition, harsh gazania (Gazania rigens).

Species that are not very demanding on soil fertility can be found among shrubs and trees. On poor soils, you can grow junipers (Juniperus), yews (Taxus), acacia (Acacia), super-hardy rose hips (Rosa rugosa), spiraea (Spiraea), chubushniki (Philadelphus), silver birch (Betula pendula), willows (silver oak (Elaeagnus commutata), alder buckthorn (Frangula alnus), field maple (field maple,), steppe almonds (Prunus tenella), viburnum bladder (Physocarpus opulifolius), white snow berry (Symphoricarpos albus), hawthorn (Cornus alba), etc.

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