Gardening in Shade

Like most gardeners in the country will have wondered, ‘What should I do with this shady area of my garden?’ All is not lost however, in this blog we will discuss the varying levels of shade and what you can grow in the shady areas of your garden.

Why Gardening in Shade Can be Tricky:

Plant life requires the sunlight, so it can be soaked up by the leaves and through the chemical process of photosynthesis, the plants convert the sunlight to energy so it can flourish. Naturally, the shade will not be an area that you would plant your favourite flowers, however there are some species of plant that not only can survive in the shade, but also thrive there.

The Different levels of Shade:

There are a few different kinds of shady areas that you may find in your garden. During the summer time, the following levels of shade could be categorised as the following;

  • Full Sun: 6 or more hours of sunlight per day
  • Partial Sun: 3-6 hours of sunlight per day
  • Partial Shade: 2-3 hours of sunlight per day
  • Heavy Shade: 2 or less hours of sunlight per day

It is important to note for areas that have less than 2 hours of sunlight per day, it will be exceptionally difficult for plant life to survive. The time of day that your plants get their sun will also play a factor in how well they will cope – as midday sun is the strongest.


Ivy is a climber that although will need support, such as a fence or the edges of a raised bed. You will have to keep an eye on it and prune as necessary to prevent overgrowth.

Bellflower:is a hardy species of perrneial plants that. The Scotch Bluebell is native to the UK. They are surprisingly hardy and cope well in shady areas under trees and you can expect them to grow to 10-12 inches in height.



Camelias such as the brushfield yellow (pictured) are a species of shrub that have a beautiful creamy white flowers that bloom early in the spring. These plants can grow well in shady areas of your garden and can grow up to a whopping 3 metres in height!

Holly bushes can add a splash of colour the garden – particularly in the winter time! But keep in mind, only the female Holly bush will produce the bright red berries that we all associate with Christmas time. Holly is a great choice for a shady area as it will grow well in partly shady conditions.

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