Design

How to Design a Colorful Shade Garden – Plant IDs

Fine Gardening – Issue 198

The plants teach me what they can do, and I try my best to help them reach their full potential. I have grown to love the shade, and I can’t imagine what my garden would be like without it. The key has been to find a palette of shade-loving plants with a long season of color and interest.

Here are some of those colorful shade-loving plants.

(Each list corresponds to the photo above it.)

1. ‘Filicoides’ hinoki cypress (Chamaecyparis obtusa ‘Filicoides’, Zones 4–8)

2. ‘Guacamole’ hosta (Hosta ‘Guacamole’, Zones 3–8)

3. ‘Hadspen Cream’ brunnera (Brunnera macrophylla ‘Hadspen Cream’, Zones 3–8)

4. Hellebore, unknown cultivar (Helleborus × hybridus cv., Zones 6–9)

5. ‘Mini Twists’ Eastern white pine (Pinus strobus ‘Mini Twists’, Zones 3–8)

6. ‘Purple Sensation’ allium (Allium aflatunense ‘Purple Sensation’, Zones 4–8)

7. ‘Tamukeyama’ cutleaf Japanese maple (Acer palmatum var. dissectum ‘Tamukeyama’, Zones 5–8)

8. ‘Geisha’ Japanese maple (Acer palmatum ‘Geisha’, Zones 6–9)

9. Molly the Witch peony (Paeonia mlokosewitschii, Zones 6–8)

 

pergola surrounded by shrubs and trees

1. ‘Guacamole’ hosta (Hosta ‘Guacamole’, Zones 3–8)

2. ‘Hadspen Cream’ brunnera (Brunnera macrophylla ‘Hadspen Cream’, Zones 3–8)

3. ‘All Gold’ Japanese forest grass (Hakonechloa macra ‘All Gold’, Zones 5–9)

4. ‘Tamukeyama’ cutleaf Japanese maple (Acer palmatum var. dissectum ‘Tamukeyama’, Zones 5–8)

5. ‘Autumn Moon’ Japanese maple (Acer shirasawanum ‘Autumn Moon’, Zones 5–8)

6. ‘Forest Pansy’ eastern redbud (Cercis canadensis ‘Forest Pansy’, Zones 5–9)

7. ‘Waterfall’ cutleaf Japanese maple (Acer palmatum var. dissectum ‘Waterfall’, Zones 5–9)

 

chartreuse and burgundy plant pairing

1. ‘Purple Ghost’ Japanese maple (Acer palmatum ‘Purple Ghost’, Zones 5–8)

2. ‘Frances Williams’ hosta (Hosta sieboldiana ‘Frances Williams’, Zones 3–8)

3. ‘Fernspray Gold’ hinoki cypress (Chamaecyparis obtusa ‘Fernspray Gold’, Zones 5–8)

 

partial shade garden bed with lots of color

1. ‘Indian Surprise’ hidden cone ginger (Curcuma aeruginosa ‘Indian Surprise’, Zones 8–11)

2. ‘Halcyon’ hosta (Hosta ‘Halcyon’, Zones 3–8)

3. Dawn redwood, dwarf cultivar (Metasequoia glyptostroboides cv., Zones 5–9)

4. Japanese forest grass (Hakonechloa macra, Zones 5–9)

5. ‘Laura’ garden phlox (Phlox paniculata ‘Laura’, Zones 4–8)

6. Abyssinian red banana (Ensete ventricosum, Zones 10–11)

7. ‘Amber Ghost’ Japanese maple (Acer palmatum ‘Amber Ghost’, Zones 5–9)

8. Japanese painted fern (Athyrium niponicum var. pictum, Zones 3–8)

 

colorful foliage in a shade garden

1. Japanese umbrella pine (Sciadopitys verticillata, Zones 5–8)

2. ‘Autumn Moon’ Japanese maple (Acer palmatum ‘Autumn Moon’, Zones 5–7)

3. ‘Guacamole’ hosta (Hosta ‘Guacamole’, Zones 3–8)

4. ‘Canadian Blue’ hosta (Hosta ‘Canadian Blue’, Zones 3–8)

5. Wisteria, unknown cultivar (Wisteria cv., Zones 5–9)

6. ‘Bloodgood’ Japanese maple (Acer palmatum ‘Bloodgood’, Zones 5–8)

7. Japanese maple, unknown cultivar (Acer palmatum cv., Zones 5–8)

8. ‘High Noon’ tree peony (Paeonia suffruticosa ‘High Noon’, Zones 4–8)

9. ‘All Gold’ Japanese forest grass (Hakonechloa macra ‘All Gold’, Zones 5–9)

 


To learn more about designing a colorful shade garden, check out the full How to Design a Colorful Shade Garden article.


Photos: Paul Zammit

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