Plants for Full Sun

If your garden has an area that gets lots of sunlight throughout the day, you need to be careful which plants you use, where plants not suited may not grow well. A lot of sun can cause soil to become quite dry, so you might use plants suited to full sun.

Planting in full sun

As there's a wide range of plants that grow well in full sun, there are a few things you can do to help filter down which plants are suitable to a particular location.

A particular variety of a full sun plant would need a certain level of moisture/dryness in the soil. It might just need full sun to fully flower and then prefer slightly less after this stage, where the continued heat/dryness from this amount of sun might prevent it flourishing, or it might grow well in these conditions.

So, if you have an area that's sunny throughout the day maybe look for plants that grow well in very dry soil, where the heat can cause soil to become very dry and leaves to burn. If an area is particularly dry you might look into what common properties plants suited to full sun and dry soil have, for example they often have properties like their leaves being spiky and/or scented.

If you have an area that's slightly shaded during the sunniest/hottest parts of the day, maybe look for plants that need more moisture in the soil.

If you're not sure of the ideal conditions for a particular plant; after your plant has been growing for a while it may give you some indication of if it's getting the right amount of light. If it's growing at a funny angle for example, it might need more sunlight. If the leaves are all burnt it may have too much sunlight. If it's doing one of these things, check that it can be moved and the steps needed, then try moving it! Alternatively, if you're very keen for a particular plant that isn't growing well to stay where it is, double check other things like the soil type and perhaps try watering it more regularly.

Plants to use for a full sun area

There's a very wide range of plants that grow well in full sun in the UK, so when deciding on plants to use you may find the selection available vast. Below we give some plants that are generally suited to full sun in the UK. Keep in mind specific plant varieties may be more or less suited to full sun.


Dahlias are tender (not hardy) perennial flowers. They come in a wide range of varieties/colours/sizes, grow well in full sun and like well drained soil that has some moisture. Varieties range in size from small to large and you could use them in areas like flower beds, borders or just plant one in a pot.


Verbascum are hardy perennial/biennial flowers. There's a wide range of varieties, some perennial and some biennial, they come in several colours and certain varieties are better suited to growing in the garden. They grow well in full sun, like well drained soil that has some moisture and can help attract wildlife.