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Low Maintenance Plants for Shady Places

Plants are very good at adjusting to different environments. Many plants listed as requiring full to part sun can actually acclimate to full shade. The plants listed below can do pretty well in full shade. They might be a little leggy and not bloom as much as they might in more sun but they will look reasonably good. Another note is that plants in full shade can take a little less water than full sun. The shade keeps the soil and plant cooler so they aren’t losing as much water to evaporation. If you want to learn more about plants for your shady spaces, come speak with one of our experts.

Accents & Ground Covers

Purple Hearts
Purple hearts (Tradescantia pallida)
• Full sun – full shade
• Low to moderate water
• Root hardy to 20
• Blooms pink in spring – summer
• Fast growth
• Size (H×W) 1 – 1 ½ × 2′-4′
Asiatic Jasmine
Asiatic Jasmine (Jasminum asiaticum)
• Part – full shade
• Moderate water
• Hardy to 0°F
• Blooms are small and cream in spring
• Slow – moderate growth
• Size (H×W) 1-2′ × 6′-10′

Shrubs & Grasses

Blue Cape Plumbago
Blue Cape Plumbago (Plumbago auriculata)
• Full sun – part shade
• Moderate water
• Hardy to 20°
• Blooms light blue spring – fall
• Moderate – fast growth
• Size (H×W) 3′ – 4′ × 6′ – 8′
Mystic Spire Sage
Mystic Spires Sage (Salvia longispicata x farinacea)
• Full sun – full shade
• Moderate water
• Hardy to 0°
• Blooms purple spring – fall
• Fast growth
• Size (H×W) 1′ – 2′ × 1′ – 2′
Pink Muhly Grass
Pink muhly grass (Muhlenbergia capillaris)
• Full sun – full shade
• Low – moderate water
• Hardy to 0°
• Blooms pink plumes in fall
• Fast growth · Size (H×W) 3′ × 3′

Cacti and Succulents

Ghost Aloe
Coral/Ghost Aloe (Aloe striata)
• Full sun – full shade
• Low water
• Hardy to 25°
• Blooms red winter – spring
• Moderate growth
• Size (H×W) 2′ – 3′ × 2′ – 3′
Lady Slippers
Lady slippers (Pedilanthus macrocarpus)
• Full sun – full shade
• Low water
• Hardy to 25°
• Blooms orange spring and fall
• Moderate growth
• Size (H×W) 3′ – 5′ × 3′ – 5′
Elephant Food
Elephant Food (Portulacaria afra)
• Part – full shade
• Low water
• Hardy to 25°
• Blooms rarely
• Moderate growth
• Size (H×W) 8′ × 8′, smaller in containers