Growing naturally in marshes and wet meadows, snowflake prefers moist or wet soils. Lamium maculatum or Dead Nettle. Walking in these areas is unpleasant and overuse can lead to soil compaction so consider installing a wooden walkway or even one or two small bridges over the boggiest areas. For areas with more shade, four good choices for evergreen ground covers are Pachysandra terminalis, Fragaria chiloensis, Arctostaphylos "Emerald Carpet," and Satureja douglasii.. 1. 5. Bowles’ golden sedge (Carex elata “Aurea”) reaches 12 to 36 inches tall and wide in clumps of yellow-green blades with early summer blooms. Compaction, clay subsoils and slopes can create problem areas where all the compost in the world cannot improve drainage. Gold fountains sedge (Carex dolichostachya “Kaga Nishiki”) creates a mount 12 inches tall and 24 inches wide. Cinnamon fern (Osmunda cinnamomea) produces 4-foot-long blue-green fronds with cinnamon brown fronds randomly appearing within the 3-foot-wide clump in USDA zones 4 through 8. Poor-draining soil is a problem when trying to grow plants. While the plants listed prefer or tolerate clay conditions, it’s always good to amend the soil with compost on a routine basis to provide nutrients for the plants. Wood ferns (Dryopteris crassirhizoma) reach 3 1/2 feet tall with a vase-shaped form and semi-evergreen fronds. The variety pictured, 'Misty Lace', is a hybrid of the two and takes the best of both. Poor-draining soil is a problem when trying to grow plants. Many are spotted with shades of purple or blue. Even your sun loving, drought resistant plants need some cooling off. It is rare to find a bulb that doesn’t rot in wet soils, but as the Grumpy Gardener says, “You can’t kill a crinum”. ‘Poquito’ Banana. “Blushing Bride” spiderwort (Tradescantia “Blushing Bride”), USDA zones 4 through 9, reaches 6 to 8 inches tall with 4- to 5-feet-long trailing stems covered in variegated leaves that age to solid green. Short of planting a banana in standing water, it is hard to give the plant too much water in summer. istock-8451693_perennial-bleeding-heart-flower-shade-garden_s4x3. Native to wet soils in ravines, marshy areas, and stream banks, Illicium beautifies problem areas with glossy evergreen foliage and brilliant red blooms. © Copyright 2020 Hearst Communications, Inc. Ferns. Rabbit- and deer-resistant plants grow 30 to 36 inches tall and 14 to 18 inches wide. This fern looks like a classic fern that you envision in the woods. “Bridal Veil” astilbe (Astilbe x arendsii “Bridal Veil”) produces pure white summer flower spikes looming 36 inches tall out of a mound of bright green leaves spreading 36 inches in USDA zones 4 through 9. ‘Panama Red’ requires moist soils, but cannot sit in water. Experts agree that some ornamental grasses don’t mind heavy clay soil, but they will do better in a part sun location. The evergreen narrow blade-like leaves are striped with gold. Cardinal flower (tolerates full shade but prefers some sun) Indian pink (full shade) Planting Ornamental Grass Shade Plants in Clay Soil. Commonly called elephant ear or taro, these tropical beauties love moisture. Viburnum, Hydrangea, Mahonia, Chaenomeles Best veg for clay soil Plants tolerate occasional saturation, but not constantly water-logged soils. These Southern Belles take everything Mother Nature can throw at them and more. Carex also tolerates drought. If you take the time to look, it’s easy to determine whether or not you have areas of poor drainage. … 6. Best Ground Covers for Shade. Poorly drained areas will work as long as they don’t stay consistently wet. The constantly wet soil lacks the oxygen content that many plants need, so plants requiring well-draining soil drown in wet soil. You can find a plant for just about any growing condition...sun, shade, even clay. Just like our gardens, not all natural habitats are well-drained and nature has supplied us with a plethora of plants that don’t mind wet feet. It … Kimberly Toscano is a freelance writer, gardening expert and traveler with an eye on design. The perfect garden features rich organic soil with drainage that allows plant to absorb water slowly through the root system. These types of plants discourage foot traffic into any swampy area. Daniel Grose is the owner of Set Apart Landscaping and a very experienced designer. When poor drainage combines with shade, most plants rot away and die. Look for bee balm in a host of colors and plant sizes — there’s one to fit any spot in your garden. Cleopatra™ Liriope. Amethyst Pearl Phlox. Grass-like plants are useful to line wet areas or plant along shady stream banks. A low-maintenance groundcover for even the most challenging locations. Variegated Solomon’s seal is a well-behaved, shade-loving plant. The tough and evergreen Euonymus fortunei (Winter Creeper) and even some varieties of Honeysuckle can also handle dry shade. Plants can survive submerged for weeks, but do need to dry out eventually. This generalized list is a starting point for finding plants for your clay soil garden. Both plants grow well in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 5 through 9. “Fireworks” rodgersia (Rodgersia “Fireworks”) reaches 3 to 5 feet tall and wide in USDA zones 5 through 8 with compound leaves and tall pink summer flower spikes. 10 Plants for Poorly-Drained Soils 1. ‘Eversheen’ EverColor® Carex. ‘Panama Red’ Hibiscus. While this plant will tolerate both full sun and full shade, it will be best in filtered shade or morning sun. Joy of Living® Celebration™ Daylily. Plants That Will Grow in Shade & Poor Drainage Grass-Like. 2. Colocasia also grows in garden soil, as long as it receives plenty of irrigation. Plants for Full Shade and Wet Soil If the shade is deep, the drainage bad and the soil always boggy use coarse compost mixed with gritty river sand to improve the drainage. Water: Evenly moist, well-drained soil. Updated: January 26, 2017. For optimal spring growth and blooming, keep soils consistently moist. Low spots in your yard can collect water from rain and sprinklers, which will drown the grass and other plants growing in those areas. Rose of Sharon seeds prolifically when placed in a good location so smaller plants may sprout near the parent plant. Karen Carter spent three years as a technology specialist in the public school system and her writing has appeared in the "Willapa Harbor Herald" and the "Rogue College Byline." Size: Up to 2 feet tall. Commonly referred to as "green carpet" or Japanese spurge.. Many cultivars are … This grass-like plant prefers shady wet areas like water gardens or woodland gardens. While raised beds of porous, organically enriched soil are the best way to go for many plants, there is a decent list of trees, shrubs and perennials that tolerate poor drainage in … ), ligularias, lobelias, lysimachias, beebalms, shrubby dogwoods, Siberian and blue flag irises, most ferns, etc. Japanese iris.Japanese Irises are among the most showy and easiest to recognize of all garden flowers. Also keep in mind while considered low maintenance, they will still require some attention from time to time. While they can tolerate shade, poor soil drainage does present a problem. Tokyo wood ferns (Dryopteris tokyoensis) grow 18 to 36 inches tall. 9. Some hardy plants will thrive in clay soils in part and even full shade: Ivy, Hosta, Vinca, Ajuga, Aucuba, Dryopteris (fern), Japanese anemones These shrubs all like clay soil in partial shade, and may tolerate full shade too. Hardy in Zones 4-9. The growing zones and conditions listed are general. Hostas are one of the first plants mentioned when discussing shade sites. When poor drainage combines with shade, most plants rot away and die. Pachysandra terminalis. 1. Scientific Name Common Name Possumhaw (Ilex decidua) – This deciduous holly produces bright red berries in winter. Not all types of plants are suitable for wet areas, so it's important to choose ground cover carefully for constantly wet areas or places that periodically flood. Inkberry Bush (Ilex glabra 'Densa') Inkberry also is native to eastern North America, where it’s often … 10. When poor drainage combines with shade, most plants rot away and die. Flowering Perennials for Poor Soil – Autumn Joy (Hylotelephium ‘Herbstsfreude’) Autumn Joy is a … I think the most difficult combination conditions for homeowners are shaded spots with poor drainage. Sometimes, despite our best efforts to improve soil health and drainage, problem areas persist in the landscape. Melica Uniflora – Described by Beth Chatto as "quietly attractive", this deciduous native grass … robbiae is one of the lovliest. Plant Guide: Shade To Part Shade - Wet To Moist Soil; Plant Guide: Shade To Part Shade - Wet To Moist Soil. Daylily roots absorb and store water, put them to work managing landscape run-off. When I recently brought up the subject, Grose readily agreed that wet shade is one of the most challenging situations. Miss Lemon™ Abelia. Poor-draining soil is a problem when trying to grow plants. ‘Ellen Bosanquet’ Crinum Lily. Tuck it along pond edges and stream banks, or plant it in a bog garden. Other plants to try in poor-drainage shady areas include “Vision In Red” astilbe (Astilbe chinensis “Vision In Red”), “Granat” astilbe (Astilbe x arendsii “Granat”) and “Rheinland” astilbe (Astilbe x arendsii “Rheinland”). Best bulbs for shade Ferns for constantly wet shady areas bring a lush look to the garden while tolerating limited light. Bleeding Heart. Why Choose Plants from Southern Living® Plant Collection. Most willows and poplars tolerate poor drainage, for example, as will plants naturally found in marshes or other soggy soil situations: cattails, aronias, turtleheads (Chelone spp. This plant looks good when planted in front of dark-colored shrubs. Sep 4, 2015 - Plants That Will Grow in Shade & Poor Drainage. Pictured above, lenten roses are tough plants that stand up to poor soil, drought, heat, humidity, and even the cold.… “Concord Grape” spiderwort (Tradescantia “Concord Grape”) forms 18-inch-wide clumps of blue-green arching leaves with purple summer flowers clustering together in USDA zones 5 through 8. Reduce your water bill and conserve resources with savvy watering practices. Perennials for Shady Gardens. It's also one of the most common beardless irises, which are generally easier to grow and more adaptable than bearded types. Don't forget that our full shade may not be like your full shade. It can be slow to start but will be vigorously growing by the 3rd year. Siberian flag iris. Add a touch of elegance to your shade garden with graceful toad lily. Kimberly blends her formal training in horticulture and entomology with her passion for design to educate and inspire gardeners. Articles. California native plants that grow in full shade What we are calling full shade is shade under a dense canopy of evergreen trees, not under a deck or other solid structure. Save For Later Print. These grass-like plants are exceptionally tough, thriving in soggy soils that make... 2. ‘Black Ripple’ Colocasia. 4. May 2, 2017 - Plants That Will Grow in Shade & Poor Drainage. This easy-to-grow flowering shade plant offers unique flowers that are often compared to orchids. ), joe pye weeds (Eupatorium spp. Full Sun to Full Shade - Zones 3-7. Ground cover plants grow wide to fill in the area but stay short for easy maintenance. Alchemilla. If you are looking for an edging plant or groundcover for clay soil, Alchemilla is a great … Ground Covers. Red Maple (Acer rubrum) – Also known as a Swamp maple, this tree has brilliant fall foliage. Both types of wood ferns grow well in USDA zones 5 through 8. Sweetbay (Magnolia virginiana) Trees. The constantly wet soil lacks the oxygen content that many plants need, so plants requiring well-draining soil drown in wet soil. By: Rosie Lerner. Bananas need a lot of water as those giant leaves are constantly losing moisture to evaporation. Ideas on What to Grow in the Garden With Casa Blanca Lilies, Hardy, Disease-Resistant, Maintenance-Free Plants, Fine Gardening: Carex Elata ‘Aurea’ (Bowles’ Golden Sedge), Fine Gardening: Dryopteris Crassirhizoma (Wood Fern), Fine Gardening: Dryopteris Tokyoensis (Tokyo Wood Fern). The dead nettle is a member of the lavender and sage family. Ground cover plants can help to protect soil and prevent erosion by absorbing water and preventing runoff. 8. Iris sibirica produces small, delicate flowers and narrow, bright green foliage. Light: Full to part shade. The flowers appear pink in June maturing to white in October. Zones 5 – 9. Grass-like plants are useful to line wet areas or plant along shady stream banks. Ferns are commonly associated with damp woodland conditions, but many of them still need well-draining soil. Plants for shade – wood spurge, Euphorbia amygdaloides There are many varieties of spurge, but Euphorbia amygdaloides var. 3. Grow them in... 3. Some light must penetrate in order for the plants to photosynthesize. Bowles’ golden sedge ( Carex elata ‘Aurea’) and gold fountain sedge ( Carex dolichostachya ‘Kaga Nishiki Partial shade tolerant clay plants include these grasses: Feather reed grass; Miscanthus; Pampas grass Try planting on small mounds to ensure healthy roots. An adaptable landscape shrub, abelia grows in a variety of soils and lighting conditions. ‘Eversheen’ EverColor® Carex. 7. 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