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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Monday - June 22, 2009

From: Milwaukee, WI
Region: Midwest
Topic: Shade Tolerant
Title: Plants for a shady garden in Wisconsin
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I have a shady garden in southeastern Wisconsin (Milwaukee) and am interested in introducing more native plants of all sizes and heights, hopefully with lovely flowers. I would love to know what you might suggest. Thank you.

ANSWER:

Please see our Recommended Species page and choose Wisconsin from the map or the pull-down menu.  This will give you a list of more than 170 native plants that are commercially available for landscaping in Wisconsin.  You can use the NARROW YOUR SEARCH option to find plants suitable for the shade by selecting 'Shade - 2 hrs or less' under Light Requirement.  You can also make selections under Soil Moisture and General Appearance.  Here are a few suggestions from the list:

Aquilegia canadensis (red columbine)

Arisaema triphyllum (Jack in the pulpit)

Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (kinnikinnick)

Cornus alternifolia (alternateleaf dogwood)

Dicentra cucullaria (dutchman's breeches)

Dryopteris cristata (crested woodfern)

Hypericum prolificum (shrubby St. Johnswort)

Lobelia cardinalis (cardinalflower)

Lilium philadelphicum (wood lily)

Mertensia virginica (Virginia bluebells)

Ostrya virginiana (hophornbeam)

Rhus glabra (smooth sumac)

There are many more choices from the Recommended Species list for Wisconsin.


Aquilegia canadensis

Arisaema triphyllum

Arctostaphylos uva-ursi

Cornus alternifolia

Dicentra cucullaria

Dryopteris cristata

Hypericum prolificum

Lobelia cardinalis

Lilium philadelphicum

Mertensia virginica

Ostrya virginiana

 

 

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