What do you have planted on the shade side of your house?

utahgardening(UT Z5)May 8, 2008

I moved recently to Roy, Utah and my house faces North. I have a shady side and a sunny side. I am getting ready to dig grass and make a border that goes all around the house. I need to know what will grow well here in Utah on the shady side and even what to plant on the sunny side.

I would appreciate any of your recommendations. I need annuals, perennials and even shrubs or trees. Also, I would love to have your advice on where to pick up some good plants. Do you have any favorite nurseries up North this way?


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dereks(6 Utah)

On the north side of my house I have Astillbe, Columbine, Forget-me-nots, Lily of the Valley, Monkshood, and a small Japanese Maple. The Monkshood grows well in the shade but is a little weak. I think it prefers a bit more sun. Lily of the Valley is a bit invasive. I also have a few spring blooming primroses.

As far as nurseries, there is a good one off hwy 89 near the mouth of Weber canyon. It is called Valley Nursery.

    Bookmark   May 10, 2008 at 12:30PM
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I second all of the above recommendations. I've also got Lamium and Ajuga in a well restricted bed, I wouldn't dare put them where they could wander free.

Bergenia Cordiflia does really well, it's a funky little plant, nobody seems to plant it around here though. It's a little slow the first year, but after that, they take off. They're easy to start from seed too.

I've had good luck with Daylilies in partial shade. They don't bloom quite as well as the full sun grown plants, but I still get enough bloom to make me happy. Mine get about two hours of full sun a a day, the rest of the time it's full shade.

Of course, there's always Hosta. Oh, and I've got a Japanese Painted Fern that's thriving in almost full shade.

As far as annuals, my work horse is good old impatiens. Mine do really well, they slow down a bit when it gets really hot, but as long as I keep them watered, they do fine.

The only shrub I have in shade is 'Goldflame' Spirea. It gets three or four hours of sun, and then full shade. It doesn't grow very fast, but I'm okay with that.

Hope any of this helps.

    Bookmark   May 10, 2008 at 7:04PM
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I wish I had more shade since I'm a hosta lover. They're gorgeous and do well in shade. If you're looking for flowers, impatients do well in shade also.

    Bookmark   May 11, 2008 at 6:41PM
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utahgardening(UT Z5)

Thank you for the suggestions everyone. I love those little Lily of the Valleys, I have to get me some of those. I guess it is too late in the season to have them bloom THIS year, but I can always get ready for next year.

Derek... I did check out your valley nursery and it was very nice. They had some 'all blue' seed potatoes, so I am going to try those and see what happens.

I did plant some Jacob's Ladder, Lupine and Foxglove, but I planted those on the east side of the house. I hope that they will do well there. They get a few hours of sun in the morning, but none in the afternoon.

My house sits on a quarter acre, but there is another quarter acre that is kitty-corner behind my house with NOTHING planted in it yet. We are talking about putting in a sprinkling system back there, but so far there is nothing. It gets mostly full sun and I'm not sure what to do with all that space! It's a little overwhelming, so I'm just sticking to the front 1/4 acre for now!

I need to look up some of these plants that were mentioned since I'm not familiar with all of them, but I'll do my homework and start planting!

Thanks all!

any other ideas?

    Bookmark   May 12, 2008 at 2:44PM
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albert_135(Sunset 2 or 3)

I have been most pleasantly surprised by daffodils along the north side of my house.

    Bookmark   May 13, 2008 at 12:10PM
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stevation(z5a Utah)

On my shady side, I have Lamium as a groundcover, Hostas, some Laurel shrubs, and I used to have a Japanese maple, but it died. Japanese maples are supposed to like shade, but my two in full sun have survived while the shady one didn't. But the two in full sun are hardier varieties. The thing they don't like is our alkaline soils and clay that doesn't drain well. I think they'd work better with amended soil that is raised up a little in a berm. The plain green or red varieties are tougher than the fancy named or laceleaf ones.

    Bookmark   May 13, 2008 at 12:34PM
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stevation(z5a Utah)

Here's a photo of my Hostas in bloom with the Lamium around them and some Laurels in the background. Hostas are mainly grown for their foliage, not their blooms, but these ones are pretty nice in bloom.

    Bookmark   May 13, 2008 at 12:36PM
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Let me begin by saying I am not a master gardener, but have had good success with a nice moderate spreader, Creeping Oregon Grape - our north side has five - with the prettiest yellow flower right now. You could also try some Manhattan Euonymus - it seems to be doing okay on my north side (if I could keep the deer out). The hostas are great.

For the east side - Little Princess Spirea, Cistena Plum, Autumn Joy Sedum are nice as are bellflowers (campanula carpatica)and Crimson Pygmy Barberry.

For the annuals look at nicotiana and coleus too.

Here's the Creeping Oregon Grape:

The Manhattan Euonymus:

    Bookmark   May 15, 2008 at 1:22PM
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If you want a tropical look, elephant ear caladiums (taro) do very well in shade. They do best in semi shade. I plant a lot of elephant ears under my flowering crab trees and they look great.

    Bookmark   May 15, 2008 at 3:40PM
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One other note. My parents had a raspberry plant that started from a seed (probably dropped by a bird) on the north side of their house about 8-10 years ago. They now have a beautiful row of healthy green raspberry plants among some ferns right against the north side of the house, that only get sun from the east in the morning, and northwest in the late afternoon. These are much healthier than the ones they used to grow in full sun. And they produce loads of raspberries each year. Go figure!

    Bookmark   June 16, 2008 at 2:08PM
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Because of loving trees, our yard is 80% in full to partial shade with only two areas getting more than two or three hours of even filterd sun so I have had to become a great fan of hostas, lamium, ferns, astillbe and most of the other plansts mentioned here.

One species that has not been mentioned is heuchera. I have come to love them for their wide variety. From yellow to the more familiar purples they make for a colorful area that has no real blossums. The only problems I have had with them are that sometime they heave up when the weather goes from frozen to warm a number of times and when a wandering deer decides that they would like to have a salad of them.

If you can not find a good variety in your area, try Terra Nova Nurseries.

Here is a link that might be useful: Terra Nova Nurseries

    Bookmark   July 20, 2008 at 12:03PM
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