Suggested Perennials for Shade

Suggested Perennials for Shade

All of the following hardy perennials grow well in light or partial shade (1/2 day of direct sun, or light filtered through a high tree canopy). Plants marked with an asterisk (*) also grow well in moderate shade (less than 1/2 day of sun). Plants that tolerate light to dense shade are indicated with two asterisks (**). The varieties below are listed alphabetically by botanical name.

Bear's Breech (Acanthus mollis)
2-3' pink flowers/large, glossy, handsome leaves
Ladybells (Adenophora lilifolia)
late summer
12-18" blue bell-like flowers on spikes
Bugleweed** (Ajuga varieties)
6" blue/foliage varies
Lady's Mantle (Alchemilla vulgaris (A. Mollis))
late spring/summer
12-18" yellow
Windflower or Anemone - all species and hybrids (Anemone)
September to frost
30-36" white, pink
Columbine - all species and hybrids * (Aquilegia)
12-30" mixed colors
Goatsbeard* (Aruncus dioicus; A. aesthusifolius)
4-6" cream
Canadian (wild) Ginger ** (Asarum canadense) 9-12" beautiful foliage
European Ginger ** (Asarum europaeum)
foliage plant or groundcover
4-6" glossy-green, heart-shaped leaves
Astilbe * (Spirea or Goatsbeard) (Astilbe - all species and hybrids)
18-36" white, pink, red, lavender
Hardy Begonia * (Begonia grandis)
15-24" H. pink
Bergenia or Saxifrage * (Bergenia cordifolia cultivars)>br>summer 10-16" pink, white, red
Siberian Bugloss * (Perennial Forget-Me-Not) (Brunnera macrophylla)
18" blue/large, rounded leaves
Bellflower (Campanula species and hybrids) variable w/ species blue and white
Hardy Plumbago * (Ceratostigma plumbaginoides)
6-10" blue flowers/red fall foliage
Turtlehead (Chelone obliqua)
2-3" purple, white
Snakeroot (or Bugbane) * (Cimicifuga racemosa; C. simplex)
3-6' white
Lily-of-the-Valley ** (Convallaria majalis)
6-8" white bells
Dwarf Bleeding Hearts ** (Dicentra exima 'Snowdrift') (Dicentra formosa 'Luxuriant') (dwarf varieties) all summer 12-15" white, pink
Bleeding Heart** (Dicentra spectabilis) May/June 2-3' deep, pink/white
Foxglove (Species and hybrids)* (Digitalis - all varieties) June/July 24-42" mixed colors
Leopard's Bane (Doronicum cordatum) June 15" yellow
Barrenwort* (Epimedium varieties) May 6-9" red, yellow, pink, lavender or white
Hardy Ferns - all varieties** 6-48" feathery green fronds
Meadowsweet* (Filipendula varieties) Summer 18-60" white or pink
Funkia (see Hosta)*
Sweet Woodruff* (Galium odoratum) June 8" white
Hardy Geranium (Geranium species and hybrids) Early Summer 6-24" white, pink blue, magenta
Hellebores (Lenten Rose, etc)* (all Helleborus species and hybrids) Summer 15-24" white, pink, purple, green
Daylily (Hemerocallis hybrids) Summer 15-24" mixed
Coral Bells (Heuchera species and hybrids) June 8-15" pink, red, white
Hosta (species and hybrids)* Summer 12-30" white, lavender flowers/green, glaucous blue, or variegated leaves
Houttuynia* (Houttuynia cordata 'Varietata') 6-12" leaves mixed green, pink, cream
Kirengeshoma* (Kirengeshoma koreana) Late Summer to 40" yellow flowers; maple-like leaves
Archangel (Lamiastrum galeobdolon 'Hermans Pride') Summer 8" yellow, silver var. leaves
Spotted Dead Nettle* (Lamium maculatum 'Beacon Silver' and 'White Nancy') 10-15" pink, white, silvery-green leaves
Lilyturf* (Liriope muscari cultivars) August 12" lavender/some with variegated foliage
Cardinal Flower* (Lobelia cardinalis) July/September to 3'red
Loosestrife (Lythrum virgatum and cultivars) 18-24" pink-red
Virginia Bluebells* (Mertensia verginica) Late Spring/Early Summer 1-2' blue
Bee Balm (Monarda cultivars) Summer 3' pink, red, white, purple
Forget-Me-Not (Myosotis species) May/June 8-15" light blue
Mondo Grass* (Ophiopogon japinacus) August 4-6" lavender/very narrow leaves
Allegehany Spurge** (Pachysandra procumbens) 9-12" green leaves with silver marks
Dwarf Fleece Flower* (Persicaria afinis 'Border Jewel') Late Spring 4" pink
False Dragonhead* (Physostegia virginiana) August/September 2-3' pink, white
May Apple* (Podophyllum peltatum) Spring 15-24" white
Jacob's Ladder* (Polemonium caeruleum) May/June 15-18" blue
Variegated Solomon's Seal** (Polygonatum x hybridum 'Variegatum') July/August 18.24" white, bell flowers; white-edged leaves
Primrose (Primula species and hybrids) April/June 6-15" mixed colors
Lungwort** (Pulmonaria saccharata; P. longifolia) Spring 6-10" blue/pink flowers marbled leaves
Bronzeleaf Rodger's Flower* (Rodgersia pinnata) Summer 3-4' rose-red
Bloodroot** (Sanguinaria canadense) Early Spring 8-12" white
Foamflower* (Tiarella cordifolia) April/June 12" white/maple-like foliage
Meadow Rue* (Thalictrum varieties) July/August 3-5' yellow/soft blue-green leaves
Spiderwort** (Tradescantia hybrids) All Summer 18-30" blue, white, red, purple
Japanese Toad Lily* (Tricyrtis hirta) Early Fall 18" white and purple
Trillium ** (Trillium species) Late Spring to 15" white - Snow rillium, red - Wake Robin
Globeflower* (Trollius europaeus) May/August 2' yellow, orange
Speedwell or Veronica (Veronica varieties) 15-18" blue, white, pink
Violets* (Viola species and hybrids) 6-10" purple, white, blue yellow
Barren Strawberry* (Waldsteinia ternata) 6-8" yellow, strawberry-like flowers

Conservatory Plants

Flowering Maples (Abutilon hybrids) 3-4' white or pink
Bear's Breech (Acanthus mollis) 18-24" large, glossy, very handsome foliage; mauve flower spikes
Agapanthus species (Agapanthus) Summer to 3' long, strap-like foliage cluster of clear blue or white flowers
Clivia miniata Summer or February 24" excellent, dar green, stump-like foliage; clear orange flowers with yellow center
Fuschias (all varieties) 12-30" white, pink, red, or purple

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