Plants for Shady Places
Shade cast by trees, shrubs or buildings can create challenges for gardeners…but it also provides opportunities too!
We grow a lot of shade tolerant plants and some that relish shade too.
We group some of the shade tolerant plants together on the nursery but split them into two sections ~ moist shade and dry shade.
Plants for moist shade
Larger plants that will grow well in moist shade include Mahonia japonica, golden privet, Viburnum tinus, Fatsia and Amelanchier.
Plants with especially good foliage include ferns, Hosta and Brunnera.
Good ground covering plants include Persicaria, Veronica, Heuchera, Tellima,Tiarella and Lamium.
Pretty flowers will be seen on Dicentra, Helleborus hybrids and Corydalis.
Taller blooms can be provided by planting foxgloves and late flowering Japanese Anemone.
Plants for dry shade
Once established, many plants will tolerate dry shade and this is probably the most difficult combination for plants to cope with.
Larger plants that will grow in dry shade include Aucuba [spotted laurel], Ribes [flowering currant], Sambucus [elder], Osmanthus, box and Berberis.
Good medium height shrubs include Skimmia, Mahonia aquifolium and Sarcoccoca [Christmas box].
Plants with foliage that will brighten up dry shade include many variegated Euonymus and colourful Berberis.
A few ferns will grow well in dry shade and these include Asplenium, Dryopteris, Polypodium and Polystichum.
Of course, hardy cyclamen will colonise dry shade. Equally, early spring flowering bulbs will cope with dry shade since they are active before the soil becomes too dry in summer.
Good ground covering plants include Vinca [periwinkles], Euphorbia, Pachysandra, Alchemilla [lady’s mantle], Pulmonaria and Epimedium.