With the hottest July on record just ending, it's a fine time to talk about perennials that thrive in brutally hot summers, and Homestead's brand manager Ann Marie Sedor has compiled some of her favorites. They include, from the left in the photo above, Russian sage (with roses), Coreopsis and Turtlehead. Click here to see all of them, and some great close-ups by creative director Melanie McCabe.
Now if I could add just one of my own favorites to this list, it would have to be good old Sedum. There are dozens of varieties available in garden centers, both the tall ones (like the popular 'Autumn Joy' shown here) and some super-short creepers that'll tolerate being stepped on occasionally. Because Sedums are succulent, they're very drought-tolerant, and where fires are a danger, sedums are prized for their fire-retardant properties, too. Confirmation of Sedum's durability and near total sustainability? They're the primary plant used on green roofs, and locations don't get more brutal than that.
Sedum photo taken at River Farm, headquarters of the American Horticultural Society in Virginia.