Best Native Plants for Boulevard Gardens

When choosing plants for harsh site conditions, look for...
  • drought tolerance: deep roots, silvery and/or hairy leaves
  • salt/pollution tolerance
  • native to area
  • suitable to your soil (clay/loam/sand)


Most drought tolerant perennials grow in sunny locations and it is important to understand how light conditions are classified.

  • Full sun – plants require at least 6 hours of direct, late-morning/afternoon sun

  • Partial shade – plants need 3 to 6 hours of morning or afternoon sun, but should be shaded from the hot, midday sun.

  • Full Shade – plants can thrive with less than 3 hours of sun. A bright location that receives no direct sun would be classified as full shade.


Native Plants for Pollinators, Credit Valley Conservation

Drought Tolerant Perennials: A Toronto Master Gardeners Guide Toronto Master Gardeners

Blooming Boulevards​ uses locally-sourced seeds of native perennials for our boulevard pollinator gardens. Most withstand drought and salt. The wide variety of plant species we grow may vary from year to year and are included in those listed below. They are arranged in order of bloom time, spring to fall. Please click image for  more detailed information.

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T: 1-905-271-1998


Blazing Star (Gayfeather)

Liatris spicata - Height:3 ft, Spread: 2 ft, Spacing: 2-3 ft. Flowers July-Aug. Flourishes in sunny sites with moist humus-rich sandy loams. Plants tolerate heavier loams, clay, gravelly or calcareous soils. They also prosper in heat, humidity and drought. During extended hot dry weather lower leaves may wither. In garden soils organic matter can be added to help retain moisture.Rabbits may nibble the foliage and stems.

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