Need suggestions for shade perennials in woodland
In a problem area that is shaded most of the year by deciduous trees -- oaks, sycamore, Ky coffee tree, hackberry, and some underplanted shrubs (forythia, mockorange, quince. Shade is dappled in summer. Spring ephemeral bulbs do well, such as narcissus, fritilarias, etc. Also, rocket, money plant, and helebores thrive. Daylilies used to, but as the shade got more dense, they mostly are just foliage with few flowers.
To compound things, its sort of dryish shade at times of the year, AND deer and rabbits eat anything remotely edible.
So, what WOULD grow there? It's pretty early on, in April and May, when the shrubs and bulbs and spring perennials bloom, then boring and ugly the rest of the year.
I realize I don't want much -- just colorful plants that are virtually indestructible in a really tough environment. Should I just load up on silk flowers at Michael's or what?