Plants for shade

Most gardens will have an area that is cast into the shadows at some point during the day, some areas of the garden may never see the sun! Plants need the light from the sun to survive by way of photosynthesis, but there are some plants that are more than happy to live their lives in the shadows, Below we bring you a selection of plants and how much shade they can tolerate to grow in.

Full Shade

This is a part of the garden that never sees the sun, it is best to use bright plants to lightened space as dark coloured plants will just blend into the background

1. Hosta

These plants will do well in shady areas but do need to be kept moist, so any dry shady areas, you may want to add some mulch around the plant to retain moisture in the soil.

2. Fairy Bellflower

These plants will reach a good height over the first couple of years and then becomes bushy, so when planting makes sure you leave space around it to spread out. Once flowered, it will self-seed, so if you don't want your space yo become overrun with them, cut the flower heads off once they start to die, this will also encourage a second wave of flowering.

3. Skimmia Japonica ‘Rubella’

This evergreen shrub provides colour most of the year, with lovely red buds in late winter that open in early spring to provide fragrant white flowers. This also grows in height and will spread, so it needs a spot with room around for it to grow.

4. Helleborus Orientalis

5. Com And Cyclamen Hederifolium

Part/dappled Shade

This is an area in the garden that is under the trees, under arches or pergola's that gets some light coming through to them.

1. Hebe

These come in a variety of colours and they are great for pollinating insects. These are easy to maintain and provide a splash of colour all year round with their leaves and flowers.

2. Pulmonaria

This flowers in early spring, it is one of the first plants pollinating insects can get nectar from. Once flowered you are left with lovely pinkish-blue flowers.

We’ve barely scratched the surface with the options for shady plants. With a little research, you’ll find there is lots of choice out there and lots of variety too. There are also types of fruit and vegetables you can grow in the shade.

Our top tip would be to monitor your shaded area so that you know exactly how much sun it gets if any and when. And don’t ignore the many other varieties of shade-tolerant plants such as Rhododendrons, Ivy, Japanese Maples (Acers), Lily Of The Valley, to name but a few others.

With a little bit of creativity, your shade-loving plants will turn a dark corner into a treasure trove of interest and it will become one of your favourite parts of the garden!

Related articles