The Q&A Archives: Full Shade Perennials?

Question: I have a full shade garden. I need to know what would do well. I am only interested in perennials.

Answer: For full, deep shade, I would suggest mixed ferns along with European ginger (Asarum europaeum) if your soil is moist or epimedium if it is dry. Hostas are always a good choice for heavy shade, too. The incredible foliage, depending on the variety, can grow from miniature to huge in size and in color ranges from blue to green to chartreuse. Although hosta blooms as a rule are not very exciting to look at, some are wonderfully fragrant. If you have a touch of sun, you might add Solomon's Seal, astilbe, pulmonaria and tricyrtis, too.

A good mail order source for many varieties of shade loving plants including these is Shady Oaks Nursery, 112-10th Avenue, S.E., Waseca MN 56093-3122 or telephone (800) 504-8006.

Good luck with your shade garden!

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