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What to plant in dry shade

Posted by jennypat Zone 3b NW MN (My Page) on
Sat, May 17, 14 at 18:51

I want a flower bed outside my office window, One that I can enjoy when I need a break from working at my desk. The problem is that it's on the north side of my house. With trees starting about 25 out, I would like the flower bed on the edge of the trees. SO it's dry, and shady, in the summer our sump pump drains out there, with our seepage in the basement, and laundry water.

I do have a bleeding heart in that area, but it's been there many years, and is still small.

SO I need plants zone 3 hardy, that like clay soil, dry, and shady...........not asking much am I!

Anyone have any suggestions?

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: What to plant in dry shade

I have lots of shade and some of the plants that do best for me are Cicmicifuga, Ligularia, Pulomnaria, Astilbe, and of course, Hosta.


RE: What to plant in dry shade

My experience in those conditions has been it's not great for ligularia or astilbe.

Lamiums, vinca, and pulmonaria do well in a similar micro-climate in my yard. Also a spreading geranium and false solomon's seal.
Let's see... and a shade rue, bloodroot, ginger, some ferns. There's a shade phlox, too.

RE: What to plant in dry shade

How about a sprinkler?
Any of the Solomon Seal/False Solomon Seal do well in shade.
Uvularia, Jack in the Pulpit, Aralias, Actea, Violas. Lots of things like the shade. And can be a good reason to get outside for a few minutes to tend to them.

RE: What to plant in dry shade

The Previous Owners, in full drought, had hostas, vinca minor, and spirea on the north side of the house (with large maples, further west, adding more shade).

RE: What to plant in dry shade

  • Posted by jel48 Z4 Michigan (My Page) on
    Tue, Jun 10, 14 at 8:16

I want to throw out there, that after having had experience with vinca on a 'larger' scale, I would not plant vinca anywhere! There was a small patch of it in the yard at the house where I live in Michigan (moved from MN) and it has spread. It's over much larger areas now and tends to choke out everything! We pull as much of it as we can every spring, but it just can't seem to be controlled.

RE: What to plant in dry shade

Iris cristata is beautiful and once established can take dry shade. The leaves are graceful and lovely and look good all spring/summer/fall.

RE: What to plant in dry shade

The many epimediums would be a good choice, I think, along with the suggestion of geraniums (macrorrhizum, maculatum, and others).


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