Shade Gardens

Shade gardens bring color and beauty to otherwise barren ground. Learn all about planning, planting and caring for shade gardens.


Wood anemone is named for its preferred habitat -- the woods. This blooming plant spreads quickly and forms carpets of star-shaped, white or blue blooms in late spring above well-divided foliage. Learn more about this plant.

Masterwort produces spiky blooms scattered in clumps; however, it is also known for its medicinal properties. This clump-forming perennial has star-shaped flowers of greenish white, sometimes tinted pink or rose red. Learn more about this pretty plant.

Variegated broad-leaved sedge has no flowers, but its attractive leaves are the shade of a green apple -- bright and beautiful. These plants add color and pop to any garden.

Western sword fern grows throughout North America, forming tight clumps, though leaves can grow quite large. Handsome, well-divided fronds with an upright form, a lance-shaped outline characterize this attractive fern. Learn more about this feathery fern.

The ostrich fern has large, featherlike fronds. It is good for naturalizing and can be successfully grown almost anywhere. It prefers moist shade although the ostrich fern's beautiful foliage will flourish under a variety of conditions. Read about this fern.

The royal fern has tall elegant fronds. It prefers acidic soil but is otherwise not particularly demanding. This tall, upright fern sprouts long, elegantly divided fronds that have a subtle pinkish cast when young. Learn more about the royal fern.

The hard fern, or deer fern, is fairly easy to grow, as it tolerates dryness better than most other ferns. As an evergreen garden plant, it can withstand frosty winters. Read about this hardy evergreen.

This hardy evergreen gets its name from the golden scales on its stems. The rich green fronds grow upright in a graceful, arching shape and can grow as large as four feet tall.

Male fern is an attractive garden plant with large foliage. Its tolerance for sun and dryness makes it easy to care for. Its large, arching fronds that typify the fern family make it very attractive. Read about this plant.

Native to eastern North America, the allegheny foamflower thrives in rich, moist woodlands. Learn how to grow and use allegheny foamflower in your yard or garden.

American maidenhair fern is a classic fern used widely in shade gardens because of its unique appearance. Learn how to grow and use American maidenhair fern in your yard or garden.

Native to the woodlands of eastern North America, bloodroot is named for its bright red sap, which was used as a dye by Native Americans. Learn how to grow and use bloodroot.

European wild ginger is an adaptable, little-known shade plant that will brighten up any yard or garden. Learn how to grow, cultivate, and maintain European wild ginger successfully.

Golden dead nettle is a colorful perennial that is well-suited to both shady and sunny locations. Learn how to grow and use golden dead nettle in your yard or garden.

Jack-in-the-pulpit is an intriguing wildflower native to North America named for its oddly-shaped bloom. Learn how to grow and use jack-in-the-pulpit in your yard or garden.

Japanese painted fern is a unique multi-colored fern that brings color and life to any yard or garden. Learn how to grow, maintain, and use Japanese painted fern.

Japanese yew is one of the only conifers that is shade tolerant, and it produces vibrant berries that please the eye. Learn how to grow and use Japanese yew in your garden or as a house plant.

Tree ivy is a cross between ivy and a shrub brush, and one of the only plants crossed between genuses. Learn how to grow and use tree ivy in your home or garden area.

Wake-robin is the showiest trillium, and also the most widely-cultivated. It spreads abundantly but never aggressively. Learn how to use this North American native.

Wintercreeper is a versatile shade plant that can be either ground cover or a dense shrub. Learn about growing, cultivating, and using wintercreeper to beautify your yard or garden.

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