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    Shade Gardens

    Shade Gardens - Flowers Accent a Lush Landscape

    This garden in Wellesley, Mass uses all manner of plants to make this landscape into a lush display of color. The carpet of green grass is surrounded by blooming trees and shrubs as well as flowering perennials and ground covers. The success of this vista is in the composition of structure and texture. By mixing woody ornamental plants in with herbaceous plants a spectacular dance ensues that draws you in. Off to the right - just outside the frame of this image - is a sturdy hammock just beckoning for a visit. Can you imagine a rest filled afternoon amidst this garden?

    What is your favorite spot in your garden?

    Shade Garden - A Seat in the Shade


    This 8 foot teak bench is nestled into a shade gardens under river birches (Betula nigra) and a redbud (Cercis canadensis). The p-stone path allows the gardener to stroll from the house and sunny lawn into a protected shaded nook to relax and enjoy the garden.

    Shade Garden - Moss Covered Bird Bath


    A moss covered bird bath surrounded by hosta and boxwood makes a spectacular garden focal point.

    Shade Gardens - Cool Foliage with a Splash of Pink


    As the summer turns hot, we need a respite of coolness in the garden. This pebble path through an east facing shade garden is lined with the nodding foliage of Hakonechloa macra 'Aureola'. The golden threads just lighting up the route. The sweet drooping heads of Filipendula rubra 'Venusta' rain light pink blossoms all through the path giving just enough color to the dance of foliage.

    Other fun perennials showing off their foliage in this landscape are Hosta, Ligularia, Astilbe and Iris.

    Shade Gardens - Slow to emerge, but lovely as they grow!

    Watching the perennials emerge in the spring is a gardener's delight. This beauty is Blue Eyed Mary...or in Latin...Omphelodes verna. It is the perfect plant to spread through the dry sections of your shade garden. She smothers weeds, covers the ground, and blooms brilliantly in the early spring. Add her to your garden to reduce the need to mulch and weed!

    Shade Garden - Steppers & Perennials


    In areas where lawn just isn't the right ground cover, but you still want some ability to walk through, use stepping stones and low interesting ground cover plants in order to get the best of both worlds - plants and passage!

    This dwarf solomon's seal (Polygonatum humile), low evergreen geranium (Geranium dalmaticum), Allenbush (crysogonum virginianum), and Crimson Fan (Mukdenia rossii) make a lovely low maintenance carpet of flower and foliage to enjoy.

    The Insider's Guide to Landscape Design