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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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Tuesday - March 30, 2010

From: Lathrop , CA
Region: California
Topic: Shade Tolerant
Title: Plants for shade in Northern California
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

What are good plants that grow and live in shade only?

ANSWER:

You can find these for yourself by going to our Recommended Species page and choosing Northern California from the map or the pulldown menu.  This will give you a list of almost 300 commercially available plants recommended for landscaping in California.  You can limit those results to shade plants by using the NARROW YOUR SEARCH option and selecting "Shade – 2 hrs or less" from the LIGHT REQUIREMENT area.  You could also make selections in GENERAL APPEARANCE, LIFESPAN, SOIL MOISTURE, BLOOM TIME and BLOOM COLOR.  Limiting your choice to "Shade – 2 hrs or less" will give you close to 50 plants to choose from.  Here are some examples from that list:

Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (kinnikinnick)

Athyrium filix-femina (common ladyfern)

Claytonia sibirica (Siberian springbeauty)

Dicentra formosa (Pacific bleeding heart)

Lobelia cardinalis (cardinalflower)

Rhododendron macrophyllum (Pacific rhododendron)

Rudbeckia hirta (blackeyed Susan)

Solidago altissima (late goldenrod)

Here are some photos of the above plants from our Image Gallery:


Arctostaphylos uva-ursi

Athyrium filix-femina

Claytonia sibirica

Dicentra formosa

Lobelia cardinalis

Rhododendron macrophyllum

Rudbeckia hirta

Solidago altissima

 

 

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