No Sun Required: The Best Plants for the Shade

Far too many people begin landscaping their yards with the best of intentions, yet end up disappointed due to a series of simple mistakes. For example, the sun moves throughout the day, and different portions of your yard receive sunlight as the daytime hours wear on. Some yards have overhang from trees or other obstructions that prevent the sun from shining onto plants, flowers, and shrubs.

If your yard is shaded and you plan your landscaping without considering the sun, your plants could wilt, refuse to bloom, or die completely. There are certain types of plants and flowers that do well in the shade, so stick to varieties that can grow without direct sunlight.

Vines that Do Well in the Shade

You may think all plants need direct sun exposure to grow, but that is not the case. In a “shade garden”, landscapers often plant vines that creep through a shaded area and create a dramatic, lush effect as they spread.

It’s not an easy feat to track down vines that are both tolerant of the shade and provide a visually stimulating display of flowering. However, climbing hydrangea vines are an option many landscapers choose to remedy this issue.

Another kind of shade-loving vine is the Sweet Autumn clematis. This vine is able to withstand shade more than is its typical clematis counterpart. The great thing about using the Sweet Autumn as a ground cover for your landscape is that it can grow upwards of twenty feet if it’s left alone. When August rolls into September, the vine begins to bloom into a breathtaking display of pungent white flowers.

Shrubs and Flowers for Shaded Yards

If vines grow too out of control for your taste, there are still options. Select shrubs that will thrive in shaded areas to give your yard an aesthetic pick-me-up. If you’re looking for shade-loving shrubs that bloom in the spring, opt for rhododendrons or azaleas. Hydrangeas are shrubs you can plant for summertime blooms.

As for flowers that do well in the shade, there are choices in that department as well. Some varieties of perennials are the safest bet since they will bloom every spring instead of lasting for only one season. Perennials will produce like clockwork year after year instead of the need to replant.

A few perennial flowers that do well in shaded landscapes are bee balm, bleeding hearts, and forget-me-nots. If you want a flower with a great aroma, try the Carolina allspice. It grows beautifully in shaded areas as well and blooms with a deliciously spicy smell.

Never let shade be a deterrent from planting a garden or landscaping your yard – there are quite certainly options when it comes to landscaping without access to direct sunlight. It’s true that the plants discussed do well without direct sunlight, but you should still take your region and climate into consideration before selecting any shade-friendly plants for your yard.

Tips for Maintaining Your Flower Garden

Is your flower garden ready to spread its wings for the summer? The sun is out and the birds are chirping and flowers are in full bloom. For the proud homeowner, their flower gardens are their pride and joy and maintaining them is a relaxing and enjoyable pleasure.

You would be hard pressed to find a flower gardener who doesn’t have a passion for the activity. From rose bushes to lilies and everything in between, the gift of flowers never disappoints. Gardeners spend their weekends taking in the rays and throwing on their gloves excited and ready to leave the workweek behind to be alone with their precious gardens.

For passionate gardeners, every tip can be a lifesaver. So, if you live and breathe your garden, let these tips help you hone your craft so you can continue to enjoy your hobby.


If you have a rainy season where you live or you just want compost on demand, consider making and saving compost. You will be “going green” and also supplying your soil with the nutrients it needs. Seasonal rain can leave the soil empty, and compost will be essential for those times when nutrients are needed most. Compost can be created from your garden leftovers and not only saves you on garbage disposal, but also helps the environment.



Most gardeners know where to plant flowers that need a lot of sun, but they forget about shade from neighboring plants. Avoid simply planting flowers wherever you like. You may want a certain type for a specific spot, but if the flower dies due to a lack of sunlight, it won’t be worth the gamble. If a flower needs sunlight, not only must it be planted in a certain area, it also must be planted away from towering plants that will block its sun. Before you plant, plot out the area on paper so you can visualize their placement to ensure they will have the appropriate amount of sunlight.
Don’t Cut Corners!


The corners are often a neglected area of the garden. If left untamed, weeds and greenery will expand into the area and make your garden appear smaller. To ensure your corners stay colorful and free of unwanted weeds, plant bright, colorful flowers that draw attention so the garden looks as big as it is beautiful.

Additional tips:

Do you have a nice lawn? There is nothing more beautiful than to ground a flower garden with plush, green grass. Another tip is to use natural elements to care for the soil instead of artificial substances. Flowers thrive in their natural environment and will do best with care that mimics what nature would provide. Additionally, don’t be afraid to add decorative features to your garden. Enhance the colors of the flowers and pull the entire landscape together with some decorative elements such as rocks, pavers, fountains and statues. As long as they don’t interfere with the growth of the flowers, they will enhance the look of your garden.