Answer: Shade gardening can be very rewarding and there is a wider assortment of dependable plants available than you might think! Hostas and ferns will provide a nice foliage effect. Flowering plants might include pulmonaria and columbine to bloom early in the season, followed by astilbe, the perennial geraniums, and later on chelone, cimicifuga and tricyrtis. You might also consider a flowering ground cover such as an epimedium or one of the lamiums. These are all available at good nurseries or by mail from a supplier such as Shady Oaks Nursery (800-504-8006).
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