This is one part in a weekly series featuring the UC Davis Arboretum’s “Life After Lawn” series – 45 can’t-fail, easy-care, low-water plants well adapted to our region and ideal for drought-tolerant landscapes.
Azure bush germander
Teucrium fruticans “Azureum”
Size: Can get 4 to 5 feet tall and 8 feet wide if left unsheared
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Bloom season: Small but prolific blue flowers in winter and early spring
Exposure: Full sun to partial shade
Pruning needs: Shear annually to shape and keep bushy; can be cut to the ground to rejuvenate
Water needs: Low; once established, deep water once a month
Snapshot: This fast-growing evergreen shrub offers a lot for a little water. Tough and drought-tolerant, bush germander can handle poor soil and rocky slopes, making it ideal for water-wise foothill gardens. Its silvery foliage shimmers in the sunlight. In winter and early spring, the bush is covered with dark blue flowers, attracting beneficial insects. (The “Azure” variety is more intensely blue than others.) As a plus, this bush can be sheared as a hedge or left to grow in a looser open form. It grows great in containers, too, as an accent plant.
For more on “Life After Lawn,” visit arboretum.ucdavis.edu.