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Planting along a driveway fence

Posted by goodbyekitty Zone 6 Wa/Sunset 3 (My Page) on
Thu, Mar 18, 10 at 22:36

Zone 6 Sunset 3, morning shade against a neighbors fence, hot afternoon sun for about 3 hours before the shade of my house engulfs it.

Will any kind of sun loving/non flowering plant do well here? I'd rather have ornamental grass or sedge in this area. Right now I have Lavendar, coneflowers, a hydrangea and a Rhody here. I planted the Rhody before the fence went up because there were 20 ft evergreens giving it shade for quite a long time in the afternoon.

The coneflowers don't seem to get enough sun and the lavendar I'm surprised are making it. I have to pick out the leaves that fall and decay on it during spring and they just don't look all that happy. As long as I give the hydrangea extra water during the hot afternoon sun, it is quite perky so it's staying. I'm going to find a cute umbrella for the Rhody but everything else is getting transplanted.

It use to be covered in junipers, but my husband and the neighbor decided to pull them all out, including the 20 foot evergreens and put in a fence. What can be planted along a driveway that gets 80% shade and 20% hot scorching afternoon sun?

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Planting along a driveway fence

Northern sea oats, and carex should be ok. There are some great carex, like 'Sparkler." What about a redtwig dogwood? These are dogwood that grow as small shrubs, and you can find all colors in bark and some with variegated leaves at mailorders like ForestFarm.

RE: Planting along a driveway fence

I'm in a different zone, but have a somewhat similar situation. My yard gets zero sun for 8 weeks during the winter, and in the summer, gets about 4-5 hours of hot afternoon sun (this is due to the treeline and in the summer the sun gets high enough to get over the trees). When we move here 2 years ago, I had planted mostly shade plants, they didn't fare well in the summer. Finally the woman at the nursery told me it's more important on finding plants that will survive the hot sun, than focusing on the shade plants. Sure enough, the sun plants survive the summer, and while they don't thrive in the fall and winter, they do okay.

How tall of bushes are you looking for? One that has done really well for me is Choisya (Mexican Orange). Sorry I don't know if it does okay in your zone. It has white flowers in the spring, but not very showy. I also have had Pittosporum in the yard, but took it out because it grew like a weed and I could forsee that it was going to outgrow it's space- there are different varieties though, and it can be pruned, but ours were on a hill that's not very accessible and pruning is difficult. Other plants that have done well for me, but I don't think you're looking for flowers, are iris and Heliotrope. I'm also in a situation that I have deer in my yard, so that limits my choices and can't comment on anything else.


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