Landscaping for Shady Areas

by J on July 29, 2010

Summertime living gives us the chance to get outdoors and enjoy the warm weather and sunshine. Many homeowners enjoy entertaining right in their own backyards on their decks or stamped concrete patios. If you’ve recently added a deck or patio to your yard, you may be considering how to best landscape it to showcase this new area. Often times, homeowners find that their decks or patios are located in a shady spot, which makes it more difficult to grow flowers. If you’d like to add some vibrant hues to a shady area in your yard, you do have some colorful options.

First of all, consider an old favorite, impatiens. Impatiens is an annual plant that grows best in shady locations, and it is a prolific bloomer. You can count on blooms for the whole summer. They also come in about every color imaginable and will brighten up a dark space in your yard.

Perhaps a pine tree causes the shady area in your yard. Pine trees drop their needles on the grass, which over time causes that soil to become acidic. This combination of shade and acidic soil makes it hard to grow most types of flowers. However, these conditions are just right for the perennial azaleas.  Azaleas are a shrub, and they are springtime bloomers. Alongside the azaleas, the perennials hosta, astilbe, columbine and bleeding heart should all thrive in these areas. Most of these plants have a shorter blooming time.

One way to ensure color in your shady garden all summer long is to plant some colorful annuals in small pots. Petunias are annuals that would do well in pots and are prolific bloomers. By planting them in pots that are small enough for you to move around, you can put the pots in sunshine for part of the day and then move them back to the patio when you’re having a party or just want to enjoy the colors while you’re relaxing.

An important consideration to keep in mind when planting in shady areas, especially where pine trees are involved, is to make sure that you amend the garden soil with lots of compost or peat moss. This will make a rich environment for your plants to thrive in.

If you need help figuring out how to best showcase your deck or patio with flowers, contact your local landscaping service. They’ll come up with a plan that will have your outdoor space blooming with color.

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