In their natural habitat plants that grow in sandy soils use up less nutrients from the soil and are drought resistant. Although sandy soil can be improved by adding plenty of nutrient rich organic matter and mulching the soil, there are a lot of plants that will grow in sandy soil without much help. Cacti is the obvious one but carrots, radishes, garlic, strawberries, blueberries, hostas, peppers, tomatoes, daylilies, iris, beetroot, parsnips, lettuce, new potatoes, and certain bean varieties are all happy in sandy soil. Some herbs are at home in sandy soil, I have listed a few on the herb page
If changing or even trying to improve your sandy soil, expensive and time consuming as it is, is not an option, why not try growing plants that will grow in sand. Much more Eco friendly gardening
Plants that can be grown in Sandy soil. Not all of these plants are available in the uk and some need full sun, check suitability for growing in your part of the uk
Annuals For Sandy Soil
Blanket Flower (Gaillardia grandiflora), Gaillardia plants actually require excellent drainage, which makes them perfect for sandy soils.
Portulaca/Purselane (Portulaca grandiflora) This semi-succulent plant produces jewel-toned blooms on low growing foliage throughout the summer.
Zinnia (Zinnia elegans), These quick growing natives of Mexico produce lots of daisy-like flowers during summer months. Zinnias will die after the first frost, but are readily self-sowing.
Perennials For Sandy Soil
Purple coneflower (Echinacea purpurea 'Magnus') These tall meadow natives produce large, daisy-like blooms from mid-summer to early fall. Purple coneflowers attract butterflies and bees, and if their cones are left on, they'll attract birds in the Autumn.
Thyme (Thymus vulgaris), This dense, low growing herb is evergreen and responds well to sandy soils. Both the foliage and the tiny flowers are highly aromatic.
Stonecrop (genus Sedum) , The genus sedum includes a wide range of succulent plants that grow naturaly in sandy soil.
Shrubs For Sandy Soil
Barberry (Berberis thunbergii). This thorny shrub produces yellow flowers and red berries. A prolific self-seeder, can be invasive.
Butterfly Bush (Buddleia davidii) A distinctive plant with tall, arching stems and long narrow leaves, Butterfly Bush is best known for its flowers, which attract butterflies .Seeds freely so can become invasive.
Scotch Broom (Cytisus scoparius), This upright, deciduous bush produces lots of yellow blooms in late spring. Scotch Broom is again invasive.
These plants are easy to grow in full sun and sandy soil
Blanket flower (Gaillardia x grandiflora). This beauty's brightly colored blooms resemble those of Native American blanket patterns, thus the flower's name. Not only is blanket flower bright and cheery, its an excellent contribution to any sunny and sandy garden.
California Poppy The tall nodding blooms are ideal in rock and cottage gardens, rather than in formal flowerbeds. Remove some of the spent flowers to limit reseeding so the plants don't take over.
Cleome spider flower(Cleome hassleriana) Native to the tropics, cleome is an easy-care annuals that's the perfect backdrop or centerpiece in a flowerbed. Cleome tolerates poor soils and freely self-seeds for the following year, making it easy to grow in sandy soil.
This beautiful annual will attract birds and butterflies to your garden with its colorful, pinwheel-shaped blooms. Its feathery foliage is attractive and creates an airy appearance. Cosmos thrives in a variety of conditions, making it a sandy garden favourite. Its a tall plant and will need staking.
Crape Myrtle(Lagerstroemia indica)
Crape myrtle blooms resemble the delicate craft paper and they come in almost as many colours, Really do need full sunshine, so best planted in the sunny south. Anyone up North, past Newcastle please let us know if you have succesfully grown Crape Myrtle in Sandy soil.
Gazania, These daisy-like blooms thrive in sandy soil and need full sun. the flowerheads close if the Sun goes in.
Lavender, My favourite, this herb is said to help people to sleep and attracts many butterflies.
Penstemon, You'll like this flower with its arching stems laden with spires of small tubular flowers that attract moths, butterflies, and hummingbirds.
Rugosa rose,(Rosa rugosa) This fast-growing rose producing fragrant white, red or pink flowers, flourishes in sandy soil and full sun and produce bright rose hips that attract countless birds in the Autumn.
Yarrow (Achillea) This extremely tolerant plant offers lacy flat-topped clusters of tiny flowers attracting butterflies. It also makes a nice cut flower, fresh or dried.
Types of Soil and the wild meadow flowers that will grow and thrive in them I have listed a few species of wild flowers and the soil they thrive in best on this page, soil wildflowers grow in
Dobies my seed and plant supplier have been awarded the "Best Buy" Seed Supplier by Which? Gardening with 91% of seeds producing healthy seedlings and the seed prices are amongst the lowest that you can find. As well as flower seeds and veg seeds that will grow in sandy soil, you can also buy flower bulbs, fruit trees and bushes, bedding plants & plug plants plus gardeners tools.
I have also listed the suppliers I use to source gardeners equipment, garden sheds and buildings for my landscape gardening clients, gardeners online shop its a safe place to shop online
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