planting a dry shaded hillside
Hello. We moved into a house that in the back is gradually sloped and wooded (~15 large oaks and numerous saplings on 1/4 acre in back). There is dappled shade mostly. There are a few ferns (wild) and low growth "shrubs"and I've planted some hostas successfully, but the problem is that the soil is not great up there and water runs off of it. We have tried to compost leaves but mostly leaves on the hillside blow down closer to our house so we end up having to rake them to the curb for leaf pickup. Note that it is pretty much impossible to get a chipper back there because of the way our propery is configured. I'm looking for ideas of how to get this area looking better and what I might plant. Basically from the first floor of our house you look out onto the floor of the hillside. If that weren't the ccase, it wouldn't look so drab, FYI in front of this area is a steeper sunny hill that has a beautiful stone wall in front of it. I have been fairly successful with perennials there, but am having some trouble keeping the top of it (where it is steepest) planted. Ivy and vinca that started at the top is migrating down towards the stone wall and competing with my perennials. I'd post a photo if I knew how! Thanks.