Shade Groundcovers

Pachysandra terminalis ‘Variegata’ – This variegated Japanese Spurge features reliably evergreen mid-green foliage with creamy-white margins and white terminal blooms in April-May. It is slower growing than the species but quite drought tolerant once it is established, forming a consistent carpet of foliage. It grows 6 to 8″ high by 12″ wide and is hardy to zone 4.

Brunnera macrophylla ‘Jack Frost’ – This herbaceous perennial is often used as an accent plant but also looks great when planted in mass. The eye-catching heart-shaped leaves are primarily silver with mid-green veining, accented by blue forget-me-not flowers from  April to May. ‘Jack Frost’ tolerates morning or evening sun and grows 12 to 18″ high. Hardy to zone 3.

Epimedium x rubrum (Epimedium alpinum x E. grandiflorum) – Bishop’s Hat or Barrenwort has impressive semi-evergreen foliage (heart-shaped) that is green during the summer, but has spectacular bronze-red highlights (particularly with a little sun) on the new growth and in fall, with starry crimson (with creamy yellow) April blooms. Grows 12″ high. Hardy to zone 4.

Convallaria majalis – Old fashioned Lily-of-the-Valley is a herbaceous perennial with very fragrant waxy white bell-shaped blooms that are often used as a short cut flower. These are borne in April-May over pairs of broad lance-shaped green leaves. It can look a little ratty by late summer and all parts of this plant are poisonous. Grows 4 to 6″ high. Hardy to zone 2.

Oxalis oregana – Redwood Sorrel is a native BC perennial with dense shamrock-like foliage and variable blooms of white (with pink veining), rose-pink or lilac. It flowers spring through summer and spreads by rhizomes, becoming thick and lush (and taller) when irrigated, and low and sparse in drier areas. It is often evergreen when sheltered. Grows 8″ high. Hardy to zone 7.


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One Response to Shade Groundcovers

  1. igardendaily says:

    Hi There! I cam across your blog when looking for witch hazels. I also am interested in Shade Ground Covers. Nice blog, I like the premise. Unfortunately I do not live in a coastal area but some of these plants still do well in the Intermountain West (where I live) so I’ll check back. I like the 5 a day concept. A great reminder to me of plants I may have forgotten about or are new!

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