Shrubs for Shade

Q. What shrubs can be grown in the shade?

A. It is best to determine the level of shade in your garden prior to purchasing plants for that area. Deep shade is generally defined as an area receiving little to no sun. Partially shaded areas generally receive three to six hours of sun each day; these areas receive morning sun and are protected from the heat of the day. Before purchasing shrubs or other plants, observe and record your conditions so that you can select items best suited for your site.

Some examples of shrubs that perform well in full shade include bottlebrush buckeye (Aesculus parviflora), summersweet (Clethra alnifolia), gray dogwood (Cornus racemosa), vernal witchhazel (Hamamelis vernalis), oakleaf hydrangea (Hydrangea quercifolia), Virginia sweetspire (Itea virginiana), and Japanese kerria (Kerria japonica).

Several shrubs that do well in partial shade are red chokeberry (Aronia arbutifolia), cornelian dogwood (Cornus mas), climbing hydrangea (Hydrangea anomala petiolaris), fragrant sumac (Rhus aromatica), Korean spicebush (Viburnum carlesii).