What are Some Low Maintenance Plants?

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  • Written By: A. Ribken
  • Edited By: Lindsay D.
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  • Last Modified Date: 08 November 2019
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Although gardening is a relaxing and fun activity, low maintenance plants can make it more of a joy than work. There are several choices in low maintenance gardening, once challenges are determined. Are drought tolerant plants necessary or low maintenance flowers? Is it the climate or the soil that presents the greatest challenges? What are the best choices in low maintenance plants?

When seeking low maintenance plants, it is especially important to consider the location of the garden. The first thing to do when planning low maintenance landscaping is to determine where the property falls on the hardiness zone map, also known as climate or growing zones. Once it is established where the climate zone is located, planning can begin with low maintenance plants appropriate to the area.

Stick with dwarf varieties of trees and shrubs. They will require less pruning and shaping, and if placed correctly, will contribute to low maintenance gardening. A good example of a low maintenance shrub is a Japanese barberry. It comes in several hues, requires only a spring pruning, and makes a great hedge. They prefer sunlight and dry soil; a perfect choice if the area is prone to drought.


A good choice among low maintenance trees would be an Amur maple tree. It can tolerate many soil conditions, although its preference is for a moist, well-drained area. The dark green leaves burst into glorious red and orange in the fall, and is especially effective as a shade tree near a patio or porch.

For low maintenance plants the choice is endless. Perennials are plants that last more than two years. This might be a good choice for low maintenance landscaping. Black-eyed Susans, purple coneflower and daylilies are example of low maintenance plants that will come back year after year.

Ornamental grasses such as feather reed grass and tall switchgrass require minimum care, contributing to low maintenance landscaping. Other low maintenance plants can include ground cover like creeping phlox, pink everlasting or creeping mazus. Make sure to check the climate zones to make sure the choices made are appropriate for the growing area.

With careful and thoughtful choices, low maintenance gardening can be more of a joy and less back-breaking work.


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Post 2

I always thought that a fern was pretty low maintenance. Either they really aren’t or I can’t grow anything. I have killed every fern I have ever bought. I don’t know if I over-watered them or under-watered them.

I bought ten ferns to hang on my wrap-around porch and they were so beautiful for about a month. Then they started turning brown and crunchy.

Post 1

What are some hardy perennial plants?

What are some hardy annual plants?

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