The Q&A Archives: Shrubs for Shady Site

Question: I need two shrubs to go in-between a spread of 3 alberta spruces. It's mostly shady so I'm looking for a bit of color. Will euonymous gold work? Unfortunately not much grows there because of the shade the spruces cast. Help.

Answer: Part of the problem with planting near your spruces is the competition for soil moisture from the roots of the trees. There are many plants that will grow well in dry shade, though. You just need to choose between them. Euonymus gold will grow there, as will Dwarf Nandina (heavenly bamboo). This plant produces reddish-tinged new foliage which changes later to green. In the fall, the foliages changes again to a reddish-bronze color. Daphne odora is an evergreen with white margins on medium green leaves. This plant produces flowers in late winter. Finally, some azaleas are evergreen and will produce a brilliant floral display in late-spring. Hope one of these suggestions appeals to you!

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