The Q&A Archives: Shady area

Question: I've had Hostas planted along the north side of my home for many years. Last year, no matter what I did, they were scraggly and just plain ratty looking. What are some flowering perennials (non climbing) that are compatable with the SE corner of Wisconsin.

Answer: Although hostas are the most popular plants for shade gardens, there are lots of other choices. Here are a few:

Aruncus or Goatsbeard is a large astilbe-like flowering plant for the large garden.

Astilbe is one of the stalwarts of the shady perennial border. It can become a bit of a thug if left unchecked.

Brunnera is one of my favorite spring blooming perennials - in sky-blue with delightful forget-me-not blue flowers. Here's how to grow it along with a picture.

Convallaria or Lily of the Valley is one of the easiest of shade garden ground covers

Dicentra or bleeding hearts are the long flowering plants in the shade garden.

Digitalis or Foxglove is a wonderfully easy shade biennial.

Epimedium is a delicate flowering plant but tough.

Geraniums are great for ground covers and specimens

Hellebore or Christmas Rose is a rock hardy plant for the shade garden that will tolerate drought spells.

Lathyrus: if you like sweet pea flowers then you might want to check this part-shade grower out.

Best wishes with your shade garden~

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