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Regional Picks: Shrubs For Shade – Mid-Atlantic

Fine Gardening - Issue 188

1. ‘Pee Wee’ Oakleaf Hydrangea

Name: Hydrangea quercifolia ‘Pee Wee’

Zones: 5–9

Size: 4 to 5 feet tall and wide

Conditions: Full sun to partial shade; moist, well-drained soil

Native range: Southeastern United States

Coarse-textured oaklike leaves give this native shrub a sense of presence. ‘Pee Wee’ flowers in June, an otherwise quiet time for native shade plants. Its fall color is rich burgundy to red (pictured), and in winter its spent flower heads remain attractive and draw the eye to its peeling cinnamon-colored bark. This cultivar is smaller than the species, making it easier to use in most gardens. Deadhead the spent flowers in late winter so they don’t detract from the emerging foliage in spring.


2. Spicebush

Name: Lindera benzoin

Zones: 4–9

Size: 6 to 12 feet tall and wide

Conditions: Full sun to partial shade, tolerates full shade; average to moist soil, tolerates dry soil

Native range: Eastern United States

Each year, the…

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