| 11.2°C Dublin

Close

Premium

Benefit of the drought: Diarmuid Gavin recommends some plants that thrive in dry conditions

As water shortages become more common, it's good to remember that plenty of plants thrive in drier conditions

Close

Verbascum

Verbascum

Bearded iris

Bearded iris

/

Verbascum

Over the past few years, I've been gardening or visiting gardens in various places around Europe and North Africa, from courtyards in Marrakesh to the arid plains of Tangiers to hillside terrace gardens in the South of France. Through all these locations, I am struck by the lushness of planting when people decide to garden even in the hottest of places.

Our gardens in northern Europe have traditionally had plenty of water. We've been warned that this will not always be the case and over the past few years we've experienced hosepipe bans from as early as May. And when we realise wonderful wine is being produced on our neighbouring island in Kent vineyards, it becomes clear that our climate is undergoing a pattern of change. So more of us are going to have to become aware of gardening in drier conditions.

As the sun shines and rain during the growing seasons becomes scarce, it's time to look at those plants which are drought-tolerant, have adapted to poor conditions and don't demand irrigation or moisture-retentive soil.