Shady Nooks: I am encouraged to fill in a very shady spot

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Shady Nooks

By mcash70
May 7, 2014

“Oh for a book and a shady nook, either indoors or out, with the green leaves whispering overhead,” John Wilson

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Name: Mary Stella
Anchorage, AK (Zone 4b)
Peonies Ponds Dahlias Canning and food preservation Lilies Permaculture
Garden Ideas: Level 2
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Oberon46
May 7, 2014 7:54 AM CST
I have a spot that is in full shade til early afternoon by mid summer. It is also rather damp. I grow bleeding heart and rhubarb there but moved the rhubarb out to sunnier locations. I am encouraged to try ferns toward the front and mid bleeding hearts and perhaps hosta and astilbe in the front. Finding flowers who will tolerate cool shady mornings but fairly warm sunny afternoons is a bit of a challenge. Leopards' Bane does well across the grassy walk as do blue poppies, Solomon's Seal, Heuchera. Any other suggestions.
"What a person needs in gardening is a cast iron back with a hinge in it" Charles Dudley Warner (spelling edited by Dinu lol)
springfield MO area (Zone 6a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Identifier
Frillylily
May 7, 2014 8:03 AM CST
I think ajuga would be a nice groundcover and I used to have a purple variety, the foliage was a bronzy purple color, pretty. I should take shade or sun. I don't think it will mind the damp soil either. You might also try creeping jenny. Be sure to choose hosta that will take some sun. Some of them will tolerate quite a bit of sun, others not so much. That may make a difference if you have afternoon sun on this area. Coleus may do well, but it's an annual, not sure if that is what you want.
Name: Mary Stella
Anchorage, AK (Zone 4b)
Peonies Ponds Dahlias Canning and food preservation Lilies Permaculture
Garden Ideas: Level 2
Image
Oberon46
May 7, 2014 1:22 PM CST
Great. Thanks so much. Hadn't thought about Ajuga. I have some but it is in the sun. Spreads nicely so never thought about trying shade. And Creeping Jenny. My only problem is that my shade is much cooler and more damp than 'outside' (uh, lower 48). So what might live down south in shady damp might just rot up here. I listened to the pod cast on shade plants and have a huge list now to try. Think I will add some vermiculite to the soil to lighten it up a little so it might dry out just a tetch. Tetch -- gardening technical term.. Rolling on the floor laughing Rolling on the floor laughing Rolling on the floor laughing
"What a person needs in gardening is a cast iron back with a hinge in it" Charles Dudley Warner (spelling edited by Dinu lol)
Name: Margaret
Near Kamloops, BC, Canada (Zone 3a)
Region: Canadian Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Tip Photographer Garden Ideas: Master Level I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Charter ATP Member
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mcash70
May 7, 2014 1:32 PM CST
Mary Stella, I am glad to have encouraged you to create your own shady nook, the plants you mentioned are great, also try Japanese Painted fern, Virginia Bluebells, Large-flowered Bellwort, Goats Beard, Brunner Jack Frost, there are many kinds and sizes of Campanulas, Astilbes, and the list goes on. Google plants for moist shade and I bet there are many that you could use. I have 2 Monkshood plants in one of my nooks that get afternoon sun and they blooms quite well, also gives height to the bed. Good luck with your project, when your finished be sure and post photos here. Big Grin

Frilly, I would not use anything that is considered a groundcover or anything creeping, too much maintenance trying to keep it from invading the other plants or taking over the whole area..
Name: Mary Stella
Anchorage, AK (Zone 4b)
Peonies Ponds Dahlias Canning and food preservation Lilies Permaculture
Garden Ideas: Level 2
Image
Oberon46
May 7, 2014 2:30 PM CST
I have many of those plants in other areas so I know they do well here. I have tried in vain to grow Japanese Painted Fern. Just don't seem to have the right touch I guess. I will look up some I am less familiar with like the Virginia Bluebells, Bellwort. Thanks again for the suggestions.
"What a person needs in gardening is a cast iron back with a hinge in it" Charles Dudley Warner (spelling edited by Dinu lol)
springfield MO area (Zone 6a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Identifier
Frillylily
May 7, 2014 2:44 PM CST
I cannot grow the Japanese fern either. It just sits there and doesn't grow. I have grown other ferns that did really well though, so don't let that keep you from trying other varieties. I have not grown creeping jenny, but the ajuga is not invasive for me. It spreads but not that vigorously, and it pulls out very easily for me if I don't want it somewhere.
Name: Mary Stella
Anchorage, AK (Zone 4b)
Peonies Ponds Dahlias Canning and food preservation Lilies Permaculture
Garden Ideas: Level 2
Image
Oberon46
May 7, 2014 4:18 PM CST
Same here. I pull ajuga and have put chunks of it in other places throughout the yard as I love it.
"What a person needs in gardening is a cast iron back with a hinge in it" Charles Dudley Warner (spelling edited by Dinu lol)
springfield MO area (Zone 6a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Identifier
Frillylily
May 7, 2014 8:28 PM CST
I grow a woodland phlox that I love. It likes shade, I don't know about the moist soil-would have to look into that. Here is a link.


Woodland Phlox (Phlox divaricata)

It smells wonderful. I can't remember about the blooms though, if it just blooms and it's done for the year or if it blooms through the summer. Maybe someone else will know.
Name: Margaret
Near Kamloops, BC, Canada (Zone 3a)
Region: Canadian Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Tip Photographer Garden Ideas: Master Level I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Charter ATP Member
Morning Glories Critters Allowed Birds Houseplants Butterflies Garden Photography
Image
mcash70
May 7, 2014 10:45 PM CST
Frilly, that is lovely, looks like it can go a little wild so would probably need to be controlled each year if you didn't want it to spread all over.
Name: Mary Stella
Anchorage, AK (Zone 4b)
Peonies Ponds Dahlias Canning and food preservation Lilies Permaculture
Garden Ideas: Level 2
Image
Oberon46
May 8, 2014 9:06 AM CST
It says this is a zone 3 and I am amazed. Is it a Lithodora. If so I tried it and it died the first winter. I would love to have one and will look around up here, if not perhaps someone has one they would sell. I would bear all postage cost etc.
"What a person needs in gardening is a cast iron back with a hinge in it" Charles Dudley Warner (spelling edited by Dinu lol)
springfield MO area (Zone 6a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Identifier
Frillylily
May 8, 2014 10:11 AM CST
are you asking if the woodland phlox is a Lithodora? That is a no. It is not the same thing.
Name: Mary Stella
Anchorage, AK (Zone 4b)
Peonies Ponds Dahlias Canning and food preservation Lilies Permaculture
Garden Ideas: Level 2
Image
Oberon46
May 8, 2014 9:43 PM CST
Okay. Looked similar in the picture. Thanks
"What a person needs in gardening is a cast iron back with a hinge in it" Charles Dudley Warner (spelling edited by Dinu lol)

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