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Gardening in the Shade

Annual flowers

Ageratum, Flossflower (Ageratum houstonianum)

  • Shade tolerance
    Light to medium
  • Size
    6 to 12 inches tall
  • Powderpuff blue flowers on mounded plants all season long. Several varieties have white or pink blooms.

Browallia (Browallia speciosa)

  • Shade tolerance
    Light to medium
  • Size
    6 to 12 inches tall
  • Purple, blue or white trumpet-shaped flowers through much of the summer. Flowers best with limited fertility and dry conditions.

Coleus (Coleus x hybridus)

  • Shade tolerance
    Light to medium
  • Size
    1 to 2 feet tall
  • Grown for its colorful foliage rather than flowers. Leaves may be chartreuse, pink, red, white or green with many different patterns on the leaf.

Flowering tobacco (Nicotiana alata)

  • Shade tolerance
    Light to medium
  • Size
    1 to 3 feet tall
  • This relative of petunia has flower colors ranging from white to pink, red, lime, and yellow.

Foxglove (Digitalis purpurea)

  • Shade tolerance
    Light to medium
  • Size
    2 to 5 feet tall
  • Most plants in the species are biennials, blooming only the second year after planting, but 'Foxy' reliably produces spikes of pinkish purple blooms the first year from seed.

Impatiens (Impatiens wallerana)

  • Shade tolerance
    Light, medium or full
  • Size
    6 inches to 2 feet tall
  • One of the best plants for color in the shade. Flower colors range from white to pink, red, orange, lilac and variegations of these. Need moisture and warm temperatures.

Lobelia (Lobelia erinus)

  • Shade tolerance
    Light to medium
  • Size
    6 inches tall
  • Most cultivars have a spreading growth habit with sky blue to deep blue blossoms. Several cultivars have white or reddish blooms. Does best with adequate moisture and cool temperatures.

Pansy (Viola x wittrockiana)

  • Shade tolerance
    Light to medium
  • Size
    6 inches tall
  • Cool season annual. Overwinters as a fall planting for color in fall and spring. Many flower color combinations to choose from.

Wax begonia (Begonia semperflorens)

  • Shade tolerance
    Light, medium or full
  • Size
    6 inches to 2 feet tall
  • Season long bloom in red, pink or white flowers. Foliage may be solid green or bronze.

Wishbone flower (Torenia fournieri)

  • Shade tolerance
    Light to medium
  • Size
    1 feet tall
  • Does best in cool part of growing season. Tubular flowers with yellow throat and purple and white or pink and white bicolor petals.

 

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G6911 Gardening in the Shade | Page 2 | University of Missouri Extension