15 Best Flowers For Shade (Pictures+Basic Care)


Growing a flowering plant in the shade can be daunting for some people.

Many people beleive that if they have a shady spot in their yard or patio, there is no way to add colorful flowers to them.

But that’s definitely not true. You can definitely add some beautiful flowers, even in shady spots.

But what flowers do well in the shade? Let’s find out.

Ligularia 

5 Flowers For Your Backyard
5 Flowers For Your Backyard

Ligularia is an amazing and beautiful flowering plant that grows well in the shade. It has purplish foliage and yellow flowers, and they need minimal care and thrive in low light.  

Sunlight: Ligularia likes partial to low light. If exposed to direct light, the plant leaves may wilt and suffer sunburn. They appreciate shady locations. 

Watering: Ligularia likes to stay wet and needs watering frequently. It is recommended to soak the plant once a week so that soil and roots are evenly watered. Do not let it dry completely before watering.

Fertilizer: Fertilize ligularia only once in the spring with organic mulch or balanced flower food. Do not over-fertilize and avoid fertilizing the plant apart from spring.

General care: Ligularia prefers a cool climate and is sensitive to very high temperatures. They will not tolerate frost and need to be moved to safe temperature levels during freezing temperatures.

Monkshood

Monkshood is native to mountains and blooms in late summer, and it has beautiful blue-purple flowers with hardy unbranched stems. They can be grown in a shaded area and added to your favored place with less light. 

Sunlight: Monkshood likes partial shade and can tolerate full sun too, and they will grow better in bright light. Partial shade is best suited for them as it will not burn its petals. If they receive low light, the stems tend to droop; use stakes to support them or move them to better lighting.

Watering: Monkshood likes to stay moist but not drowning. Water is in the growing season to keep the soil moist for the plant to grow to its best. They can withstand drought for short periods, but proper watering is crucial for growing bushy and strong.

Fertilizer: Feed monkshood with compost or balanced fertilizer during spring. The secret to healthy monkshood is a rich soil mix. If the soil quality is poor, the plant will not be able to grow to its optimum.

General care: Keep monkshood in cooler temperatures and low to average humidity. They do not appreciate high temperatures and need shade in high temperatures. 

Wild ginger

Wild ginger is a flowering plant, but its flowers grow beneath the foliage at the base. They produce brownish-mauve flowers and have large kidney-shaped foliage, and they grow slowly and need a shady area to grow well. You can keep it in your shade garden. 

Sunlight: Keep your wild ginger in the dark spot or low light area and avoid exposing it to full sun. Direct sun will burn the leaves in hot summer, and they will be happiest in full to partial shade.

Watering: Water wild ginger only when the soil is dry and avoid keeping them moist. They don’t appreciate extra watering and will do great in dry soil but not drought. Ensure proper drainage system to avoid waterlogging.

Fertilizer: Fertilize wild ginger with low nitrogen fertilizer such as 10-20-10. They can survive even without fertilizer, still, if you want fertilizer applied only once in the spring.

General care: Wild ginger likes warm temperatures and doesn’t need cool temperatures. They like average humidity. Avoid keeping them near radiator vents, fireplaces, etc.

Spiderwort

Spiderwort produces beautiful flowers in purple-pink or white color. The plant can grow up to a foot high, and it can grow in partial shade and grow well in favorable conditions.

Sunlight: Provide your spiderwort indirect bright light, partial shade, and avoid direct sun. Direct sun rays can scorch its leaves, so please keep them in partial shade or bright light to boost growth.

Watering: Water spiderwort regularly to keep its soil moist and check its soil before watering to avoid overwatering. Feel the soil’s moistness by digging a finger a few inches deep in the soil. If the soil feels moist, wait for it to dry. 

Fertilizer: Feed spiderwort don’t need food to grow. If you wish to fertilize, then fertilize with a diluted balanced fertilizer once in two months in the growing period. Too much fertilizing can lead to root burn and leaves losing their variegation.

General care: Spiderwort thrives in temperature levels between 65°F to 75°F. They can tolerate temperatures below 50°F, but it can damage the plant. Keeping them in an average humidity bathroom or kitchen is good for them, and occasional misting is also helpful.


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Viola

Violas are fast-growing flowering plants with flowers in all shades of the rainbow. They grow well in a shady area and will brighten your indoor garden or space with less light. Their flowers are edible and can be used to decorate confections, etc.

Sunlight: Violas can tolerate direct sun but during hot summers prefer shadier spots. Excess heat is harmful to their growth and may cause sunburn. During hot weather, choose a shady spot for them.

Watering: Water violas regularly, but don’t keep the soil soggy. Check the soil moistness before watering to let the soil dry between waterings. They are drought tolerant but keeping them moist will promote growth.

Fertilizer: Feed violas with diluted fertilizer once in the spring and once in late summer to stimulate bloom and growth. Avoid feeding in fall and winter as it can adversely affect their growth. 

General care: Violas grow best in cool temperatures, from 40°F to 70°F, perfect for cold areas. Plant them in an acidic, organically rich soil mix for best growth.

Astilbe

Astilbe is low-maintenance with long beautiful blooms in shades of white, pink, red, etc. They will brighten your space even in low light and shady spots. They are slow-growing and bloom for years if proper care is taken. 

Sunlight: Astilbes develop well in low light but will grow in full sun too. Provide them some light for better growth, and in hot weather, avoid exposing them to full sun.

Watering: Water astilbes to keep the soil moist, especially in warmer months. They do not appreciate long periods of drought, leading to the browning of leaves. 

Fertilizer: Feed astilbe with fertilizer, i.e., 5-10-5 during spring. Astilbe needs phosphorus to bloom but does not fertilize in the dormant season.

General care: Astilbes will survive winter, even very low temperatures. After the first frost, add a layer of mulch to regulate soil temperature. You can cut back flowers in spring. 

Lenten rose

Lenten rose to produce pink, white, or purple colored flowers along with green leaves. They grow slowly and mature in 2-years into a flowering plant. They are great options to grow in low-light areas. 

Sunlight: Lenten roses are best to plant for shade because their vibrant sepals and leaves will retain, unlike other plants. It is better to provide them with some light to avoid leaf drops during winter.

Watering: Water Lenten rose frequently in summer to keep the soil moist. Keeping them wet will invite diseases. Check the soil before watering and water when the soil is dry to avoid watering issues. 

Fertilizer: In late winter, use balanced fertilizer to feed your Lenten rose to promote new foliage growth. Young Lenten roses do not need feeding organically.

General care: Lenten roses should be kept in safe temperatures during frost and shade during intense summer. They like humid conditions and will grow well in constant moisture.

Lamium

Lamium will brighten your shade landscape with its silver leaves and pink, yellow, purple flowers. It is low maintenance and will spread beautifully with their creative color schemes. They are a great option if you want to cover an area with an attractive plant.

Sunlight: Lamium can be grown in partial to full shade. In hot summers, keep them in the shade, and in winters, you can expose them to light. They are the best choice for growers looking for shade-loving plants. 

Watering: Lamium needs water frequently when kept in bright light or direct sun. In shady spots, they will do well with less watering. They will be happiest if you keep their soil evenly moist.

Fertilizer: Feed Lamium with compost when growing actively, or you can use manure tea if compost is not available. You should avoid too much fertilizer as it will adversely affect the plant’s growth.

General care: Lamium prefers cool temperatures and low humidity. Cut the ends of Lamium when it finishes blooming.  

Foamflower

Foamflower produces pink, white soft color flowers with dense, glossy foliage. They are a good choice for growing in a shady spot, and they look great as ground cover if you want. Its leaves have reddish variegation, which sometimes turns reddish-bronze in dormant months. 

Sunlight: Foamflower grows well in partial shade to full shade. If you wish to keep them in a sunny spot, keep them in the morning sun. Exposing them to the harsh sun will scorch the plant’s leaves and affect its growth.

Watering: Give your foamflower a drink when it is halfway dry. Keep its soil evenly moist but not soggy. It can tolerate short periods of drought too.

Fertilizer: Foamflower will benefit from balanced fertilizer by diluting it to half the strength in the spring before the new growth begins. If the soil mix is rich, fertilizing can be ignored.

General care: Foamflower is cold hardy, and will suffer in hot temperatures. Trim the old stems after the flowering stops to promote new growth.   

Toad lilies

Toad lilies are beautiful flower plants with flowers held upright, resembling orchids. They are red to purple, and the foliage is deep green. They are easy to grow and will grow easily in shady areas too.

Sunlight: Toad lilies will develop in low light, part shade, full shade and will not appreciate the direct sun. Please keep them in part during hot weather to full shade for a healthy blooming plant.

Watering: Toad lilies should be kept evenly moist with well-draining soil. Please do not keep it in standing water as it will soon lead to root rot and further wilting of the plant.

Fertilizer: Toad lilies will grow well without fertilizer, especially if the soil mix is rich and well-draining. You can add mulch to give them a cool root run. Avoid fertilizing them in dormant months.

General care: Toad lilies like cool temperatures and average humidity. You can propagate it by seed or division and use preventive measures from snug and snails in early spring. 

Coral bells

Coral bells have bell-shaped blooms and green leaves. New varieties grow different shades of leaves such as red, purple, green, gold, etc. they grow well as ground covers container gardens and develop moderately in the shade too. They will grow easily with minimal care.

Sunlight: Coral bells love the shade, especially in hot weather. Direct sun can scorch their leaves, and the color may wash out. Please keep them in indirect light or shade for best growth and health.

Watering: Coral bells like even moisture and need watering when the soil is dry. It is okay if the soil is dry for some time, but dampness will attract fungal diseases. During hot weather, please give them a drink to keep them happy.

Fertilizer: Fertilize coral bells with diluted balanced fertilizer or compost in the spring. Avoid over-fertilizing as it inhibits flowering rather than improving. If you grow coral bells in containers, then feed them with a water-soluble fertilizer.

General care: Coral bells are cold hardy, but mulching will help them face extreme cold and prevent roots from exposure. They can tolerate temperatures from 45°F to 60°F. Keep them evenly moist and safe during dormant months.

Bugloss

Bugloss has dark green leaves resembling an ox tongue and bright blue blooms. It is easy to grow and long-lasting, which grows well in the shade. They spread beautifully as ground cover and grow well in a container, filling color all year long.

Sunlight: Bugloss likes shady conditions and can grow in low light. If you want to keep it in full sun, then you need to provide it with frequent watering. Though direct sun can scorch its leaves and plants’ growth will be affected too. 

Watering: Bugloss likes to stay evenly moist, especially during hot months. They can bear drought but will stay happier with frequent watering. Water when the soil is halfway dry by checking the soil moistness in regular intervals.

Fertilizer: Bugloss does not need fertilizing and will grow well if the soil is organically rich. You can feed them with diluted fertilizer in spring but make sure the soil mix is rich and well-draining.

General care: Bugloss prefers cool temperatures and tends to suffer in hot summer conditions. 

Corydalis

Corydalis produce tiny trumpet-shaped flowers that last from spring till frost. Flowers come in shades from pink to purple to blue and white. They have delicate leaves which look great as ground cover. Corydalis is an amazing choice for growing in the shade and looks equally beautiful in walkways too.

Sunlight: Corydalis loves shade and will fill your space with color. They will grow in indirect light, but direct harsh sun rays will scorch their leaves. Please keep them in partial to full shade in hot summers.

Watering: Corydalis likes evenly moist soil and can tolerate small periods of drought. Water it to keep it moist, but don’t drown it. Ensure proper drainage to prevent sogginess and overwatering. 

Fertilizer: Corydalis is a light feeder but benefits from compost or balanced organic fertilizer. Feed it with compost or fertilizer by diluting it to half the strength in spring to promote flowering.

General care: Corydalis likes average humidity and cools to warm temperatures. Remove sent flowers; otherwise, it will self-sow itself. They do need pruning.

Bleeding heart

Bleeding hearts have beautiful heart-shaped blooms that bloom in cool springs, and they have bluish-green leaves which go dormant in the summer heat. Bleeding heart leaves are sensitive to heat, due to which it is appropriate for growing in shady areas, cold regions, etc.  

Sunlight: Bleeding hearts love the shade, grow them near a tree to see a happy bleeding heart. Please keep them in partial to full shade in hot summer to protect their delicate leaves.

Watering: Water bleeding heart in hot summer to keep it evenly moist and help beat the summer heat. The plant may disappear until the fall; mark the spot and water it to keep the roots hydrated. Do not overwater them and let the soil dry halfway before watering. 

Fertilizer: Bleeding heart will stay happy in organically amended rich soil mix without fertilizing. You can top dress bleeding hearts with leaf mold to feed them nutrition.

General care: Bleeding heart is a cold-loving plant and turns yellow when the weather is hot. They ideally stay happy in temperature levels ranging between 55°F to 75°F. It will self-seed if you don’t deadhead it.

Lungwort

Lungwort produces lung-shaped flowers, due to which the plant has got its name. The leaves have sometimes spotted markings, and looms are in pin, violet, blue colors. It has a moderate growth rate and loves shade. Grow them along the garden wall, fences, etc., where they can receive some shade.  

Sunlight: Grow lungwort in partial sun to full shade. They grow better in the bright indirect sun, but the leaves will wilt if exposed to the full harsh sun. If kept in full shade for long periods, the flowering may be less abundant.

Water: Lungwort should be watered to keep its soil evenly moist, neither too dry nor too wet. Water after checking the soil moistness in regular intervals. Avoid over-watering the plant at any point.

Fertilizer: Fertilize lungwort in the early spring with balanced diluted fertilizer. Do not overfeed or feed in other months as it will do more harm than good. You can mix compost into the soil.

General care: Lungwort prefers mild temperatures and may suffer in hot weather. They grow well in a humid climate and grow in spring. 


Ref: Kansas State University, University of Massachusetts Amherst, Missouri Botanical Garden, Fertilizing annual flowers, Mississippi State University.

Richa

Hello everyone, My name is Richa and I am here to make you a better gardener by creating an in-depth and helpful resource for all the fellow gardeners out there. If I could help even a few people understand their plants better then I call it a success for my efforts.

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