These 25 shade-loving plants will add new life to your garden

These 25 shade-loving plants will add new life to your garden

Every item on this page has been selected by A Balcony editor. We may earn a commission on some of the items you choose to purchase.

Photos by R.A. Kirton//Getty Images


Blue flowers of Lobelia erinus
com. lenalir//Getty Images

Lobelia loves cool weather and looks stunning when dropped from planters or window boxes. These annuals hardly tolerate direct sunlight, so give them plenty of shade. Once night temperatures exceed 70 degrees, they become shaggy. Cut them back, and they should come back once the cold weather arrives again.

Shop Lobelia Seeds

The rose of fasting

Beautiful spring, double pink hellebore also known as the Lenten rose
Jackie Parker Photography//Getty Images

A diverse group of hellebores, these stunning perennials bloom from late winter to early spring and come in an array of gorgeous colors. It is cold hardy and often blooms when there is still snow on the ground.

Shop Lenten Rose Plant

Japanese forest grass

hakonechloa macra aureola growing in a pot in the yard
Photos by R.A. Kirton//Getty Images

These deciduous perennials are one of the few ornamental grasses that thrive in shade. Japanese woodland grass grows in clumps and serves as a ground cover, grouped along a slope, as a foundation plant, or in containers where it displays its beautiful arching shape.

Shop Japanese Forest Grass

Advertisement – Continue reading below

Oakleaf hydrangea

Snow Queen Oak Leaves Hydrangea Blossoms
Mark Turner//Getty Images

This native hydrangea has large, dense pink or white flower heads that provide interest and texture for three seasons. Unlike other types of hydrangea, its leaves have bright autumn colors. It's a good transition from woods to grass along the property line. It does best with moderate morning sun and afternoon shade.

Shop Oakleaf Hydrangea

Foam flower

Foam flower with heart leaves
Arter//Getty Images

This native woodland plant has charming, foamy flowers in early spring with evergreen foliage. Foam flower tolerates deep shade but thrives best when it receives some dappled sun.

Shop foam flowers


Brualia, a garden flower with violet petals of green leaves, is grown mainly in Central and South America
Mauricio Toro//Getty Images

Also called amethyst, this little-known annual flower is distinguished by its gorgeous blue flowers. Its semi-trailer shape works perfectly in hanging baskets and containers.

Shop Brualia

Advertisement – Continue reading below


Summer flowering fuchsia pink flowers are outstanding
Jackie Parker Photography//Getty Images

These stunning annuals are best displayed in hanging pots or window boxes. Its purple, pink, red or mixed flowers attract hummingbirds and butterflies.

Shop fuchsia plants


Oxonian geranium
Photos by R.A. Kirton//Getty Images

Also known as hardy geraniums, these perennials feature spicy-scented foliage and beautiful pink or purple blooms from late spring through summer. Some of them flourish continuously. They make excellent edging plants and tolerate a great deal of shade while still blooming vigorously.

Shop Cranesbill Plants


Grace Carey//Getty Images

With their brightly colored ruffled leaves, these perennials add a pop of color to any shady spot, although they will tolerate some sun. Also called coral bells because of the tiny flower spikes that appear in midsummer, this plant is hardy, rabbit-resistant and available in any shade from bright orange to dark purple. Plant them in groups for best results.

Shop Heuchera

Advertisement – Continue reading below

Japanese maple

Japanese maple
Michel Viard//Getty Images

These trees have graceful shapes, stunning fall colors, and attractive foliage. Most species prefer shade, but some can tolerate sun, so read the plant tag or description to be sure what you're buying. The Japanese maple is a nice sized small to medium tree that makes a beautiful focal point.

Shop Japanese Maple Trees


Dwarf flower
com.fotolinchen//Getty Images

These lesser-known perennials have gorgeous flowers that appear in spring. It's cold hardy and makes a charming ground cover, although it doesn't like foot traffic, so plant where it won't be disturbed.

Shop Epimediums


Pink begonia plant
49poly//Getty Images

These hardy flowers bloom from spring to hard frost in every color of the rainbow from white to hot pink to pale peach. There are many species, most of which are grown as annual plants, and some are grown for their leaves alone. Some also tolerate a lot of sun, so read the plant tag or description before purchasing. Begonias thrive equally well in landscaped beds and pots.

Shop Begonia

Advertisement – Continue reading below


Garden hosta in late spring
Darryl Golin//Getty Images

These hardy perennials are as versatile as they are versatile. They come in a range of sizes from four inches to six feet. Its leaves may be smooth or wrinkled, and it is available in colors such as dark green, green and blue. Hostas produce small flowers in summer in shades of pink, lavender or white. They are grown in borders, as foundation plantings, at the base of trees or shrubs, or in containers.

Shop hostas


Best plants for balcony shade Digitalis purpurea
Photo of Olsztyn//Getty Images

This classic home garden flower with tubular-shaped flowers in shades of pink, peach, lavender, white, yellow and red thrives in partial shade. It is not long-lived, usually growing for a few years, but will self-sow. Plant at the back of a mixed border.

Shop foxglove seeds


Heart wings angel jesus
Djpop//Getty Images

With heart-shaped leaves and splashes of hot pink, these showy plants provide plenty of drama for containers or beds. If you live in a cold climate, store them in a container so you can bring them indoors to enjoy them as a houseplant over the winter or dig up the bulbs and save them for next year.

Shop Caladium

Advertisement – Continue reading below


com. onepony//Getty Images

Impatiens are one of those tried and true annuals that never disappoint. They come in tons of bright colors to fill pots, hanging baskets, window boxes, and landscape beds and bloom all season long. Look for New Guinea plants or new hybrids that are not susceptible to diseases such as powdery mildew.

Shop imatens


Coleus seedlings
Djpop//Getty Images

This annual comes in every color you can imagine from hot pink to deep burgundy to lime green. Many species tolerate sun or shade, so read the plant tag or description to be sure what you're buying.

Shop coleus seeds

Lady's cloak

Lady's cloak
Pictures of flowers//Getty Images

An old favorite that is making a comeback with interest in cottage gardens, Lady's Mantle has beautiful, pigmented flowers on arching stems in mid- to late spring. It is a long-lived perennial.

Shop lady's abaya

Advertisement – Continue reading below


Turinia fornieri flower
mansum008//Getty Images

Also called the wishbone flower, this playful annual flower comes in shades of pink, white and purple and lasts from spring to fall. Fill window boxes and planters with the extra variety, and wait for hummingbirds to visit all summer long.

Shop Torrenia Plants


The best plants for shade are astilbe
Reda and partners//Getty Images

With their showy blooms above fern leaves, these shade-loving perennials are a beautiful way to add color and texture to parts of gardens where other flowers may not flourish. Make sure it gets some sun so it can flower.

Shop Astilbe Plants

Head shot of Erika Elaine Sanson

Arricca Elin SanSone writes about health and lifestyle topics in the areas of prevention, rural life, women's day and more. She is passionate about gardening, baking, reading, and spending time with the people and dogs she loves.

HDM playlist preview for all sections - Veranda US:

Advertisement – Continue reading below

Advertisement – Continue reading below

Advertisement – Continue reading below

    (Tags for translation) The best plants for shade 

You may also like...

Leave a Reply