With the opportunity to do some landscaping when we moved into our house, I chose plants for functionality (skip laurels for privacy) and sentimentality (a dogwood and a japanese maple, familiar from my childhood). Being a novice gardener, I was next drawn to showy flowering plants, most requiring full to partial sun. Left neglected? A large portion of the yard in almost full shade where not even the grass would grow.
So what's a girl to do? Why consult with our favorite local outdoor living expert, Susan Cohan, of course! I had thought that the shady corner was destined to be a mass of bland ferns but she helped me understand the potential that this space holds. Now, thanks to her, I've got a list of plants hand-picked to grace my shady corner which should (fingers crossed!) withstand the abundant shade, local deer population and the weather extremities of our zone 6-6B climate.
The Calycanthus, or sweetshrub, is an top choice for a blooming shrub in my shade garden.
Images by Will Cook.