Full Sun Plants For Sandy Soil - Growing Full Sun Sand Plants

Full Sun Plants
(Image credit: Ivannag82)

If you live near the coast, you probably have thrown up your hands when it comes to planting ornamentals and vegetables. It is true, sand and sun present a special challenge to gardeners. Add salt and wind to the mix and many coastal dwellers have given up hope of growing any kind of vegetation. The dilemma can be overcome by choosing plants that like full sun and sand. 

Plants That Like Full Sun and Sand: Sandy Soil, Full Sun Plants

A sandy soil is fast draining due to its larger soil particles than clay or silt types. While that might be advantageous, the quick moving water also depletes the soil of nutrients and moisture. Believe it or not, some plants prefer a dry, nutrient poor soil, and those are the plants to seek out. 

Here are popular full sun plants for sandy soil that thrive in low fertility and moisture. 

Annual plants for sun and sand:

Perennial plants that like full sun and sand:

Vegetables with long tap roots do well in sandy soil because the roots can penetrate the soil easily. 

  • Carrot (Daucus carota var. sativus) Zones 2-11
  • Potato (Solanum tuberosum) Zones 2-11
  • Radish (Raphanus sativus) Zones 2-11

Lettuce will grow well if it is watered every day. Collard greens perform well in early spring when sandy soil is already warm. It also needs regular water. 

These herbs are sandy soil, full sun plants that thrive in slightly acidic, well-draining soil. 

  • Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) Zones 6-9
  • Thyme (Thymus vulgaris) Zone 5-9
  • Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) Zones 8-10
  • Oregano (Origanum vulgare) Zones 5-12

Groundcover full sun sand plants:

  • Moss phlox or creeping phlox (Phlox subulata) Zones 3-9
  • Sedum varieties (Sedum spp.) Zones 4-9

Flowering shrubs 

Susan Albert

After graduating from Oklahoma State University with a degree in English, Susan pursued a career in communications. In addition, she wrote garden articles for magazines and authored a newspaper gardening column for many years. She contributed South-Central regional gardening columns for four years to Lowes.com. While living in Oklahoma, she served as a master gardener for 17 years.