10 Plants That Survive High Temperatures (>120F)

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If you live in extremely hot climates where summer temperatures can go more than 120 F (45C), most plants that you have will die of sunburn even if kept in shade just because of the fact that shade can only minimize the intensity of the UV rays, and does not affect the temperature that much.


I live in the UAE, and here in Dubai we have summers that go well above 45C for about 1-2 months. In this time period, I lost almost all my plants in my outdoor garden. Most plants featured in this list are flowering plants that will continue to not only survive, but produce buds and bloom in extreme summer climates. Here is a list of outdoor plants that actually survived this extreme heat.


  1. Frangipani (Plumeria)

frangipani plumeria with white flower. This plant can survive extreme heat

Loves direct sun, drought tolerant and easy to grow and propagate by stem cuttings.

  1. Prickly Pear Cactus (Barbary Fig)

prickly pear cactus with pink flowers

Extremely drought tolerant and require very less watering.

  1. The Yellow Oleander (Thevetia Peruviana)

yellow oleander flower

Toxic to pets and kids. Wear gloves when pruning.

  1. Nerium Oleander

nerium oleander with light pink flowers will survive extreme summers

Blossoms all year under the sun

  1. Bougainvillea

Bougainvillia - my favorite summer tolerant plant

My bougies survived extremely well in the desert heat. However, I was not able to get them to flower much during these high temperatures and the growth was also halted.

  1. Desert Rose

Desert Rose, as the name suggest, survives in the desert heat.

A plant made for the desert, it thrives in full sun and needs watering only when top soil is dry. It can be grown from stem cuttings as well as seeds.


  1. Vinca (Periwinkle)

Vinca will survive high temperatures if kept in shade.

This beautiful plant lost a lot of its leaves due to direct sun. Although they love full sun, it gets a bit too much when temperatures are above 120F (45C). However, I was able to keep it alive by keeping it in shade and frequent watering. If you forget to water this plant for a single day, you will see a dead plant the next morning. So make sure you are keeping it hydrated to combat the high temperatures. I wrote an article about how to grow vinca which you can check out.

  1. Purple heart (tradescantia pallida)

tradescantia pallida also called purple-heart will survive extreme summers

  1. Portulaca moss rose

portulaca moss rose with pink flowers. These will survive harsh summers.

They are heat and drought-tolerant.

  1. Elephant bush (portulacaria afra)


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