Skip to main content

Tried and True plants

To see more information about a particular plant or genus, click on the name to go to a more detailed page. There is a pager at the bottom.


There are a number of dwarf limoniums.  Despite the fact that most of them are seaside, or coastal plants,  they have done very well in our foothill rock gardens. Most of them form a small colony of basal rosettes of dark green leaves topped with pale blue flowers.  The flowers are small, but there are a lot of them, and the butterflies enjoy them. They reseed gently.  Very tough.  Most of our came from seed exchanges and are of questionable identity. 

Limonium minutum Limonium minutum

An adorable miniature limonium. Mounds of tiny leathery leaves and short stalks of lavender flower sprays. The Limonium are practically bombproof in Sierra Foothill gardens. If you leave the flower scape in place, they will reseed readily.

Limonium bellidifolium Limonium bellidifolium

Basal rosettes of leathery leaves and sprays of smokey lilic “statice” flowers.  Very  tough in hot dry locations.  Will reseed if grown in gravel.  The mounds of leaves are often mistaken for succulents in my garden. 

Limoium psidiclada Limonium psidoclada

The plant we have actually came from a bay area nursery many years ago.  I have no idea if it is properly identified, but it forms neatly shaped domes of leathery rosettes topped with airy sprays of small lavender flowers.  


There are so many amazing oreganos for the rock garden or the mediterranean garden.  You can grow them in the sun, but they are invaluable for dry shady areas, and for bringing late season color to the garden.  We avoid the tall small flowered ones like all the O. laevigatum cultivars.  Too weedy and seedy.  I am still pulling them out years later.  But the low mat formers are gorgeous. 

Origanum 'Barbara Tingey' Origanum 'Barbara Tingey'

Probably our favorite oregano.  Low  mat-like habit with long clusters of pink flushed bracts in late summer. Gorgeous trailing over and between rocks. Mounds 5"x18". 

Origanum 'Kent Beauty' Origanum 'Kent Beauty'

Pale green leaves, flowers are subtended by beautiful pale green bracts tinted pink.  Arching mounding habit, a medium size oregano for larger rock gardens.  For us, this is larger and looser than 'Barbara Tingey'

Origanum acutidens

Mounds of highly aromatic green foliage.  Tubular pink flowers surrounded by ornamental sea-foam lime green bracts.  A beautiful oregano native to cliffs in Turkey.   

Origanum calcarticum Origanum calcarticum

Another dynamite oregano for larger rock gardens.  Fuzzy grey arching branches end in beautiful mauve and rose tinged flower clusters.  Colorful from July until frost. One of my favorites.  And yet, I decided it was too big for its location and moved it and lost it.  If you have it, I would like a division. 

Origanum ‘Suendermanii’ Origanum ‘Suendermanii’

A very delicate and lovely dwarf oregano with small bright green leaves and pink tubular flowers peeking out between beautiful long bracts of green and pink. Perfect for a choice location. Stays very compact.