The Q&A Archives: Spilling container plant to compliment shaded Victorian facade

Question: I have two ledges at the entrance to my south facing Victoria house where I'd like to put two attractive, hardy container plants that will 'spill over' the ledges a bit. The area is south facing but probably gets about 1-2 hours of sun in a day because it's ground level. Any suggestions for something with interesting architectural leaves that will cover the ledges a bit?

Answer: I think the perfect plant for the situation you describe is one of the shade-loving pelargoniums. We normally think of zonal geraniums as being sun-lovers, but the following types thrive in just a few hours of sunshine:

Gold Leaf Zonals - the leaves, instead of being the normal green, are a golden-green and on some varieties a yellow-green color. In this group the zone markings are in different shades of brown, from dark to mahogany and some varieties do not have zone markings at all.

Silver Leaf Zonals - the leaves are a green color but there are white or cream markings on the leaves. The white/cream shows up as edging in various widths and also as white veins or white/cream splashes and blotches. As with the gold leaf, not all silver leaf have zone markings but when they do, they come in a variety of colors.

Butterfly Leaf Zonals - the leaves have a blotch in the center that resemble the open wings of a butterfly. This group comes in dark green with the butterfly shape in either yellow, gold or white but they also come in the reverse, where the leaves are gold/golden-green and the butterfly markings are in dark green.

Hope one of these is just right for your garden!

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