Zone 8 Sun Lovers – Sun Tolerant Plants For Zone 8 Landscapes

Zone 8 plants for full sun include trees, shrubs, annuals, and perennials. There are many beautiful plants that will thrive and give you enjoyment for many years.

Sun Tolerant Plants for Zone 8

Zone 8 in the U.S. is a temperate climate with mild winters and stretches from patchy areas of the west coast, through Texas and the middle section of the southeast. It’s a pleasant climate and one in which a lot of different plants thrive. There are some, though, that won’t tolerate the heat, the sunlight, or the potential for drought. That said, there are many more that will tolerate such conditions in the landscape.

Since there are so many heat loving plants and trees to choose from in zone 8, below are just a handful of favorites.

Shrubs and Flowers

Here are some zone 8 plants for full sun and heat (specifically shrubs and flowers) that you can enjoy in your garden:

Century plant. This agave species loves full sun and dry soil. It’s a stunning, large plant that really makes a statement. It is called a century plant because it blooms just once before it dies, but it will last for many years. Just be sure not to over water it.

Lavender. This well-known herb is a great small shrub for landscaping and it produces pretty little flowers with a distinctive floral smell. Lavender plants love sun and dry conditions.

Oleander. Oleander is a flowering shrub that thrives in full sun and grows up to ten feet (3 meters) tall and wide. It also resists drought. The flowers are large and range from white to red to pink. This plant is highly toxic, so it may not be suitable for kids or pets.

Crape myrtle. This is another popular, sun-loving shrub or small tree that produces showy flowers. Crepe myrtle comes in a variety of sizes, from miniature to full size.

Zone 8 Trees for Sun

With a sunny, hot yard in zone 8, you want trees to provide shade and cool spots. There are plenty of trees that will tolerate and even thrive in the sun you can provide them:

Oak. There are a few varieties of oak, including Shumard, Water, and Sawtooth, that are native to southern regions, thrive in the sun, and grow tall and wide, providing plenty of shade.

Green ash. This is another tall-growing sun tree that is native to the southern U.S. Ash trees grow fast and will provide shade quickly.

American persimmon. The persimmon is a medium-sized tree, growing to 60 feet (18 meters) at a maximum, but often only half that height. It loves sun, needs well-drained soil, and provides annual fruit.

Fig. The Ficus family of trees is popular at nurseries and is often sold as a houseplant, but it really only thrives outdoors in sun and heat. It needs moist soil that is well drained and will grow up to about 20 feet (6 meters) tall. As a bonus, fig trees provide lots of tasty fruit.

Sun and heat loving plants are abundant and that means that if you live in zone 8, you have a lot of choices. Make the most of your sunny, warm climate and enjoy these beautiful plants and trees.


Waterlilies are traditional in ponds of all sizes, floating on the water's surface with their large foliage pads. Some of the smaller species of waterlily work well in smaller ponds. Dwarf hardy waterlily (Nymphaea candida) spreads around 3 to 4 foot wide and produces stunning white flowers that appear in May and last until September. Hardy waterlilies grow best in full sun in USDA zones 3 through 10. Several other cultivars of dwarf waterlilies grow well in small ponds. For example, “Andreana" dwarf waterlily (Nymphaea x “Andreana”) spreads about 2 feet across with burnt red blooms that protrude 1 to 2 inches above the water. “Andreana” grows in full sun in USDA zones 3 through 12.

8 Best Sun-Loving Plants for Indian Gardens

So here is the good news. Sun-loving plants tend to be among the most free-flowering of all garden plants. If you are lucky enough to have a sunny garden or terrace, then with the help of some regularly watered soil, you will be able to grow a huge range of plants.

Recognising sun-loving plants
The best plants to use in a sunny garden are those that would naturally be found in exposed positions with high light levels, and low rainfall. Plants that can cope in such locations have evolved by developing certain characteristics such as effective water storage. A sunny garden planted with suitable plants will be much easier to establish and maintain than one with poorly chosen plants.

Climatic zones of India are divided into three types:

1. Tropical rainy climate

(The west coast of India including parts of Maharashtra, Gujarat, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal, and the Andaman-Nicobar and Lakshadweep Islands)

2. Dry climate
a) Tropical semi-arid
(North, central and south Maharashtra)
b) Sub-tropical arid
(Rajasthan and Gujarat)
c) Sub-tropical semi-arid
(Punjab, Haryana, UP, western MP, Delhi)

3. Sub-tropical humid climate
a) Sub-tropical humid
(Foothills of the Himalayas, Bihar, northern West Bengal, Assam, Orissa)
b) Mountain/Alpine
(Mid-Himalayan mountain range)

All the plants mentioned in this story are acclimatised to our Indian climatic conditions and should be easy to grow in your gardens with the right care. Opting for these varieties is one of the best decisions you can make for a hassle-free, bright and colourful garden.

Here are eight great plants that will make the best of all the sunshine they can soak up.

1. Succulents
Succulents are one of the most beautiful companions you can choose for your full-sun garden. Being hassle free, and requiring minimum maintenance and water, they are the ones you should be looking for if you find yourself with limited time for caring for your garden. Succulents will give you the joy and fulfilment of a low-maintenance garden, and even surprise you with a beautiful display of flowers.

Ideal climate type: 1, 2a, 2b, 2c
Best for: Those with limited time to care for the garden

2. Rain lilies (Zephyranthes candida)
Locally known as: Fairy lily
Also known as zephyr lily or fairy lily, this is a charming petite plant to have in the garden. Available in pink, yellow and white colours, rain lilies produce colourful starry flowers late in summer all through the monsoon and up till October.

Ideal climate type: 1, 2a, 2c, 3a
Best for: Use as a flower bed when planted in large numbers, tucked beside a boulder, or peeking out between other sun-loving plants.

Tip: Be sure to keep them at the front of your garden border so that their petite blooms are easily seen.

3. Plumbago (Plumbago auriculata)
Locally known as: Neel chitrak

Plumbago is a perennial shrub with light-green foliage and sky-blue flowers that bloom in summer and then again post the monsoon season. It can be used as a shrub, climber and potted plant, as well as ground cover, depending on how it is pruned.

Ideal climate type: 1, 2a, 2c, 3a
Best for: Spots beside walls, courtyard gardens, patio and terrace gardens, and attracting butterflies.

4. Golden Thryallis, canary bush (Galphimia glauca)
Locally known as: Galphimia

This evergreen shrub loves the heat and sun and can be ever-blooming in tropical countries like ours. It is also a good choice for a potted plant and is drought-tolerant once established. The yellow flowers appear all summer even during dry spells.

Ideal climate type: 2a, 2c, 3a
Best for: Using as a filler plant, and for attracting bees and butterflies.

5. Crepe myrtle (Lagerstroemia indica)
Locally known as: Sawani, dhayti

Topping the charts for easy care, crepe myrtle is a near-perfect patio tree for warm climates. In spring and summer the trees bloom with showy clusters of flowers in colours that can range from white to pale pink, deep magenta and red.

Ideal climate type: 1, 2a, 2c
Best for: Planting as a feature tree against a backdrop wall, or even against some beautiful foliage planting.

6. Bougainvillea (Bougainvillea
Locally known as: Booganvel

When we talk about climbers, the bougainvillea is the first plant genus that comes to mind. It is a low-care vine, commonly recognised by its flamboyant clusters of vividly hued flower-like bracts (specialised leaves). The actual tiny white flowers nestle within. On closer contact one notices its liberally thorny branches.

Ideal climate type: 2a, 2b, 2c
Best for: Planting on a chain-link fence, or on a trellis or arbor, for a lovely colour show all summer.

7. Pink ball flower (Dombeya wallichii)
Locally known as: Domrupani

This lovely plant blooms during the months of March to May, with very large clusters of pendulous, pink flowers. The large leaves resemble hydrangea and defoliate from December to January.

Ideal climate type: 2a, 2c, 3a
Best for: Growing as a shrub, as a specimen plant, or for some privacy screening.

If you’re looking for sun-loving palm trees, you’re in luck because the selection is huge and there is no shortage of full-sun palm trees, including those well suited for containers.
A popular landscaping plant, the golden cane palm (Dypsis lutescens) is ideal for bringing a tropical feel into your garden. Its bright green and gold stems are a stand-out and the dense foliage is perfect for providing that lush verdant look – great for screening.

Another great choice is the silver Bismarck palm (Bismarckia nobilis) – This highly sought-after warm-weather palm thrives in heat and full sun.

Ideal climate type: 1, 2a, 2c

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Watch the video: 5 Heat Tolerant Perennials . Garden Answer

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