Shade gardening opens up a whole new world of beautiful and interesting plants for the gardener to discover! Shade loving plants are often noted for their attractive foliage and can be combined to produce appealing contrasts in form, texture and color. From the large variegated leaf forms of Hosta to the delicate sprays of fern leaves, the diversity of foliage is breathtaking. Shade loving plants that produce blossoms are also abundant. Use white blooms and light colored flowers to brighten up a shady garden.
The term "shade" encompasses many light conditions. Shade can range from dense darkness to the light-dappled shade under a locust tree. Most plants require at least a few hours of direct light each day or an abundance of filtered light (part shade), while a few plants can thrive in the darkness of a forest (full shade). Other factors you will need to consider when planting your shade garden is the amount of moisture your shady spot receives and the soil conditions. The soil under large trees is usually dry because of the "umbrella" effect, and the tree's large root system. Other locations may have soggy soil that will only allow bog-type plants to grow.
Click here to view a complete list of shade tolerant plants