need help choosing shade plants - Knowledgebase Question

Plainfield, Il
Avatar for dariamackey
Question by dariamackey
April 23, 2008
Hi, I'm ready to do some planting in my front yard. It gets morning sun, and afternoon shade. I would like to plants some shrubs that have color leaves as well as perennials, but do not know which ones to use. I am in Garden zone 5A. Any help would be appreciated!

Answer from NGA
April 23, 2008
Your zone 5 garden should do well with any (or all!) of the following shade tolerant
perennials and shrubs:
Candytuft; White, flat flower clusters. Partial shade.
Cardinal Flower; Red flowers July to September.
Lobelia cardinalis; Grows in wet areas.
Columbine; Many cultivars to choose from.
Coralbells; Tolerates shade but prefers full sun.
Cowslip; pring blooming plants. Many different types.
Daylily, Orange; Orange-red mid-summer blooms on 6-foot spikes.
Hemerocallis fulva; Tolerates a variety of soils. Sun or partial shade.
Dead Nettle, Spotted; Though somewhat weedy in shape, this plant has dark green leaves splotched with silver. Small, lavender flowers bloom through summer.
Epimedium, Long-Spur; Red to white flowers in spring.
Dense Epimedium grandiflorum; foliage with bronze fall color.
Dictamnus albus; Geranium, Blood Red Profuse, purple-red to magenta flowers May to August.
Geranium sanguineum; Interesting foliage throughout the season.
Hosta (Plantain Lily); Many cultivars available with variegated foliage. Flowers borne on spikes.
Rose Mallow; August to September blooms. Good wetland plant.
Shooting Star; Rich, light soil. Attractive blooms April to June.
Spiraea (Japanese Astilbe); Attractive flowers June to August. Sun to partial shade.
Sweet Woodruff; White flowers May to mid-June.
Trillium; White flowers in spring. Prefers woodland soil.

Aralia, Five-leaved; grows to 9'; Essentially pest-free shrub that can be used as a clipped hedge.
Barberry, Japanese grows 5'; Profuse flowers and red fruit. Grows well in a variety of soils.
Red Chokeberry; grows to 12'; Female plants bear gray berries. Semi-evergreen.
Elderberry, American; grows to 8'; Edible berries attractive to birds. Grows in
moist and wet soils.
False Cypress, Dwarf Hinoki 5' Evergreen foliage. Many sizes and forms from which
to choose.
Firethorn (pyracantha coccinea) grows to 6'; Vivid red-orange berries. Dark green foliage.
Fothergilla; Yellow-scarlet fall foliage. Pyramidal habit; spring flowers.
Hydrangea, Oak-leaved grows to 6' and blooms mid-summer, with red fall folliage. May be killed to the
Oregon Grape Holly 3' 5-6 Broadleaf evergreen. Bronze new growth, interesting
flowers and fruit.
Photinia, Oriental 15' Red-bronze fall color. White flowers in late May followed
bright red berries.
Witch Hazel; grows to 15'; Small flowers bloom in late fall. Golden fall color. Witch Hazel, Vernal 6' Small, fragrant, yellow-red flowers bloom in February or
Hamamelis vernalis March. Brilliant yellow fall color.

Hope these suggestions are helpful!

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