Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Shady Ladies


Every so often a garden needs renovating from tired plants or ones that like to gallop away throughout the bed.  This was the case for my woodland garden, a small area behind the shed which is densely shaded by the chokecherry grove the birds planted for me.
Recently I attended a seminar called 'Shady Ladies' which prompted me to take stock of the plants and introduce some new ones.  A woodland setting has rich humusy soil with the degree of shade full to partial so the first thing I did was cut back overhead branches to let in more light.  Then I pulled out almost all of the plants because they were already elsewhere in a shade garden.
I introduced some native ferns; ostrich, marginal wood and maidenhair.
The soft and lacy looking maidenhair
A non-native fern for us but native to Japan and China is the Japanese Painted fern.  There are several named varieties with silver/green foliage and burgundy stems.
Japanese painted 'Silver Lace'
Barrenwort (epidmeium) will naturalize into a colony in dappled shade and I purchased E. x versicolour which is clump forming with copper flushed leaves. Small yellow orchid-like flowers around appear about the same time as the leaves.
Web source
I also picked up wintergreen, a 10-15 cm tall native plant that will spread to a nice sized clump.  The red berries overwinter and are edible as are the wintergreen flavoured leaves.
Web source
Having several varieties of dogwood already, the 5-15 cm high bunchberry which can be found in wooded areas also seemed a good choice to add to this garden.  It has tiny white flowers in summer that turn into red berries in July.
Web source
The woodland garden; newly renovated with starter plants, and once it fills in will take care of itself.  The hepatica stills has a few wayward leaves before it disappears for the summer and I may move a few more small native plants back here.
Any tantalizing shady ladies in your garden?
I'm linking with:
Cottage Garden Party at Fishtail Cottage
 Home at Rose Chintz Cottage
Fertilizer Friday at Tootsie Time

31 comments:

  1. These are beautiful Judith. That will be a lovely spot when it fills in. I have some ferns that have come up on their own in one flower bed that used to be shady but is now mostly sun since we had the trees cut down. There is another fern growing under the cedar by the front deck. Lots of shade and dampness there. Of course I have lots of hostas here and there which I love. I like the idea of using naturalized woodland greens like you have.

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  2. Hi Judith. I'm hoping to plant a shaded garden this summer. I've been hoping to plant one for 3 years now, so we will see. The antique summer phlox that has taken over my front garden has been here for many years. We even took everything down to the bare soil a few years back and brought in all new dirt and those darn things were back fast and furious next year. They are pretty in a cottage garden when they are young plants and just start blooming, but then they become so leggy and yellowed. My husband pulls them out and here they are again this year and they don't leave much room for anything else...Happy Wednesday..Judy

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  3. I have been doing the same thing, but I did make a mistake of putting shade plants in a too sunny location. That will wait till fall to move them again. Just hope they live through the summer. Your plants look lovely.

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  4. those are lovely! i love shade gardens.

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  5. Shade gardens are so cool, both literally and figuratively. I have tried repeatedly to introduce maidenhair ferns, but they don't make it. Darn! I love that swirl they have to them.

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  6. That's just beautiful! I don't have much of a flower garden I'm afraid. My neighbor has some Impatiens in a shaded area, and they're always so pretty.

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  7. Hello, Judith

    I'll look forward to seeing updates on this garden as it starts to fill in. I have sweet woodruff in the shade under my lilac, a few ferns that wandered over from a neighbour, but like the look of the wintergreen. I'll have to keep my eye out for that.

    -Karen

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  8. Hi Judith, thank you for visiting my Garden Tea Party and for leaving a comment. Your shady lady garden will look really good when it fills in. I don't have a very big shady garden around here and the small section that I do have the deer won't stay away from it! Pesty creatures! Anyway, have a great week!
    Gina

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  9. Good morning Judith,
    What a lovely variety of plants you have. The maidenhair is beautiful and I also love your wintergreen. I admire you ladies who have such beautiful gardens. My hubby is far too busy to garden and my back won't allow me to. So I will just have to be content to wander through gardens like yours. Thank you for joining me at my HOME this week and have a beautiful day.

    Blessings,
    Sandi

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  10. beautiful shade garden and blog! I love wintergreens, the berries don't last long at my house, the birds love them. Found you thru Fishtail cottage blog:) Following you now too!

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  11. Such a pretty little shade garden. I love ferns and when I find them growing around my yard I transplant them into a group of two I have going. The dappled sun on them just looks so pretty, and I love the smell of them. Your new plants are going to look great when they all fill in ... I hope you show us another shot of it later in the summer ;) Wendy

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  12. Hi Judith, gosh I don't know which ones I like the most... actually they are beautiful and I could imagine them in my woodland area! I do have a soft spot for that yellow in the Barrenwort, that wintergreen is pretty tempting looking as is the bunchberry! Something else to think about this year! :D
    thanks for sharing your plant wisdom with us...
    Hugs,
    Beth P

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  13. Your shade garden is so nice....how wonderful that you are able to have the luxury of pulling up plants and replacing them with starter plants, with native plants waiting in the wings if you need to move some into the garden.

    Oxalis has been one of the best shady plants for me. I grow it in containers which winter over and come back in the spring. Then during the heat of the summer, they hold on for dear life, and rebound with lush purple foliage and pink blossoms in late September - December.

    Judith

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  14. It is going to look great Judith. The blue bells will look lovely in the spring, maybe with some Trilliums and bloodroot. Have a great weekend. Jen

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  15. That is a very interesting dogwood bush!

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  16. I enjoyed your informative post about shade garden plants. I'm always in awe of gardeners, even though I don't have a green thumb myself. My day lilies [one of the few plants that grow in my garden because they are indestructible] are just about ready to blossom.

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  17. In my "Shade garden" which is mostly hosta, I have added bleeding heart, both pink and white, old fashioned bleeding heart too, columbine (white and blue), shooting star, Jack in the Pulpit (4 Jacks this year!!) and each year once the ground warms up I have a very large Colocasia which goes back in. Wish I had more space for more plants - we're never satisfied are we?..

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  18. Beautiful shady ladies!! I love the ferns...don't know if I should try again...here in Oklahoma our summers are soooo hot! I have ferns in pots..but maybe should try them in my shadiest areas again! You've inspired me!!
    Miss Bloomers

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  19. You picked two of my favorite ferns to use in your newly redone shady garden. I like to use trillium too. Thanks for sharing, Laura

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  20. Judith, I love the epimedium and ferns. I find it hard sometimes to tear plants out, but as you say, gardens need rejuvenating from time to time. You did a great job!

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  21. Great variety Judith. The woodland garden look good and will fill in within a couple years and be beautiful.
    Cher Sunray Gardens

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  22. Your garden is lovely. I need to do a better job in my shade garden.

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  23. That'll be lovely once established, I love shady areas :)

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  24. The longer I garden, the more I appreciate the shade lovers... some great choices here! Larry

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  25. Those are all pretty choices! I think that ferns are gorgeous plants!

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  26. Hi Judith, I enjoyed your post and your careful choice of plants. Love the Japanese Painted Fern. It is very cathartic to redo an area and start from scratch again.

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  27. I renovated my wet shade garden with more natives like hardy wild geranium and my dry shade is being weeded and a few more dry shade native plants will be added. Love revamping and tweaking my gardens.

    Can't wait to see yours growing in Judith.

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  28. Precious the maidenhair plant, I like!

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  29. My "Shady Ladies" include the Japanese painted fern and maidenhair fern you have as well as some common ferns I transplanted from the banks of the creek behind our house. They are huge! I also have Shaggy Shield ferns and some hostas, Solomon's seal, heuchera and a Japanese tulip a friend gave me last year. I thought it had died since there was no sign of it this spring, but the other day I checked again and 6-inch-tall shoots are coming up! Yippee!

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  30. I love ferns.. I found some tiny ones in moms walk way and pulled them up and now they are very nice and big in one side of my garden... very nice. with love Janice

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  31. Some of the plants you presented here are new to my sight. I0 never thought that ferns also have other varieties. They really are great to look at as their color blends to the greeneries of the surroundings. Thanks to the information you just shared with us. I hope you could impart more.

    from June Dowd@Online PhD Degrees

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Judith

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