Planting a garden as a family can deliver an amazing opportunity for bonding. You can involve your kids in all aspects of your garden, from planning the setup to picking out and then planting to perfect flowers, vegetables, and more.

But if you’re hesitant to get started planting your home garden because you’re unsure of how to find plants that can stand up to our trying climate, you’re not alone. That’s why Crème de la Crème of Goodyear put together this list of various plants that will do well in our Arizona town. In fact, you’ll discover a huge range of beautiful flowers, delicious vegetables, and beyond that won’t require a ton of work.

Flowers and Plants

Low-maintenance purple flowers blow in the wind in a garden in Goodyear, Arizona

Pink fetal flowers” via Unsplash by daiga_ellaby

If you think you’ll have trouble finding drought-tolerant plants for your Goodyear garden, think again. A wide variety of gorgeous and low-maintenance options exist ready to take your family gardening experience to the next level.

Drought-tolerant plants are generally any plant with low water requirements, including plants that have adapted to arid climates, and there are plenty that will grow well in your own back (or front!) yard. Just remember that most drought-tolerant plants will still need regular watering until they establish their roots. Have fun picking out some amazing plants your kids can help care for as you delve into gardening together.

Perennial Plants

Perennials are a great low-maintenance option as you only need to plant them once, then enjoy as they keep coming back. Some perennials to try include:

  • Agastache: This tall plant produces spikes with white or purple flowers. Agastache does well in the sun, and it blooms through the summer and fall months.
  • Echinacea: You might know this plant better as coneflower. The native plant offers a vibrant touch, and it will do well in pretty much any well-draining soil.
  • Lantana: Though considered an annual in cooler areas, lantana grows as a perennial in warmer climates like ours. You can get lantana in pastel hues as well as colors like pink, red, orange, purple, yellow, and white.
  • Lavender: Though lavender comes from the Mediterranean, it will tolerate drought and stand out in your garden. Bonus points? The sweet smell these beautiful flowers provide will make your garden even more welcoming.
  • Penstemon: Your kiddos are sure to delight in watching the hummingbirds and butterflies penstemon will bring to your garden, though this plant’s vibrant red blooms are a wonder to behold on their own.
  • Salvia: Add blue, purple, or red to your summer and fall garden thanks to salvia’s vibrant blooms.
  • Russian sage: Elevate any sunny place with this shrubby plant that has bluish-purple flowers and silvery-gray foliage. As long as your soil drains well, Russian sage is good to go.
  • Veronica: Put this plant in well-draining soil that gets plenty of bright sunlight, then have fun watching its tall spikes with blue, pink, purple, or white flowers grow.
  • Yarrow: This prairie plant is easy to both grow and maintain. You’ll find yarrow available in shades like pink, red, orange, white, and yellow.
  • Yucca: Sword-like foliage grows from this evergreen shrub.

Annual Plants

With so many annuals to choose from, you’re sure to find flowers and plants every member of the family will enjoy growing. (In our area, some of these annuals may even grow like perennial plants, returning each year.) Look for plants such as:

  • Cosmos: Feathery foliage and blooms similar to daisies in hues including maroon, pink, and white make cosmos a beautiful option.
  • Dusty miller: This hardy plant delivers visual interest thanks to silvery-gray foliage. Dusty miller does best in full sunlight with rich, well-draining soil.
  • Marigolds: Low-maintenance flowers that love the sun, marigolds endure in popularity. You’ll find them in several sizes as well as colors spanning from red to mahogany to gold and yellow tones, so you’re sure to discover marigolds perfect for your garden.
  • Portulaca: Perhaps better known as moss rose, portulaca hugs the ground and loves bright sun and intense heat.
  • Zinnias: Looking for a way to brighten up a dreary place in your garden? You can’t go wrong with zinnias, available in a wide array of pastel tones and bolder shades.

Edible Plants

Planting edible plants like vegetables together can teach kids about where their food comes from, and may even provide that added boost of inspiration to get picky eaters to try new veggies. Even more good news: With relatively warm winters followed by hot summers, our area offers a year-round planting zone ideal for planting home gardens with various foods.

Even if you have absolutely zero gardening experience, you can easily plant a thriving vegetable garden with your kids. Check first and last frost dates for Goodyear to work out a general planting schedule. A light freeze will kill tender plants, while a moderate freeze will be destructive to most plants.

The Old Farmers’ Almanac provides an amazing resource for figuring out when to plant your favorite edibles. You’ll have a wide range of easy-to-grow plants to choose from depending on your needs and wants, including:

  • Beets.
  • Bell peppers.
  • Cabbage.
  • Carrots.
  • Cauliflower.
  • Cucumbers.
  • Eggplants.
  • Green beans.
  • Lettuce.
  • Onions.
  • Peas.
  • Potatoes.
  • Pumpkins.
  • Radishes.
  • Spinach.
  • Tomatoes.
  • Turnips.
  • Zucchini.

Just imagine sitting down to a family dinner that starts off with a salad constructed from the veggies your kids helped plant, care for, and harvest. Then, the main meal continues with a delicious side dish further crafted from your home-grown goods. Your kids won’t be able to resist showing off their gardening skills by indulging in the delicious flavors they’ve helped create.

That concludes Crème de la Crème of Goodyear’s list of low-maintenance plants to use in your very own family garden. Whether you’re looking to put together a beautiful display for your yard or grow tasty, wholesome foods to use for family meals (or maybe a little bit of both!), this list has you covered. An abundance of plants that withstand drought and love sun means your family will have plenty of planting options to explore. Do you have a tip for gardening with kids? Drop us a line so we can share it with other area families.