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Grow Guide: Shade Loving

Shade Loving

Shade is often a nightmare for gardeners and often results in shady spots becoming no-grow areas for many plants. Shady spots can come in all shapes and sizes and are often the result of trees, north-facing walls or thick plant cover. Shade can be more of a problem in urban gardens where there are more obstacles blocking the natural light. However, there are a surprising amount of plants that can tolerate different levels of shade.

These shady characters can range from shrubs to annuals to perennials which means there is lots of variety to choose from. Check out our list of plants for shade and add some life to any nook in your garden. Your local garden centre will have a range of shade-tolerant plants to choose from.

Types of Shade

All plants will have a different degree of shade tolerance, some will have no tolerance but others love the shade. Woodlands are an excellent example of areas that have strong shade but are still full of life. Knowing the different types of shade will help you choose the right plant for the right place:

Light Shade

An area that only receives 2 or 3 hours of sunlight in either the early morning or late evening.

Moderate Shade

Areas that only receive light that is reflected or diffused. These areas do not receive any direct sunlight throughout the day.

Deep Shade

These are places that do not receive any light and are in constant shade. For this reason, the soil is often cool and dry or moist (not in-between). Deep shade is typically found at the base of trees and walls.

Tips for Shade

If you have a large tree in your garden which is casting too much shade,  remove some of the lower branches to let some light through.

When choosing plants for shady areas, use pale bright colours like whites and pale pinks to ensure they stand out in the dark.