Why Shady Beds Are Not So Bad


I’ve always wanted a shady garden, but I was worried that it wouldn’t be as beautiful or easy to maintain as an outdoor space with plenty of sun. Luckily, I discovered that shady beds can be just as gorgeous and fun to create as sunny ones—they just require a little more attention to detail. This blog will explain how to choose plants for your shady bed, what soil they need, and how to make sure they stay healthy for years to come!

Shady beds can be hard to maintain with the right plants.

While we’re at it, let’s briefly examine some of the reasons that shady beds are not so bad:

  • Shady beds require more maintenance. If your garden is in the shade, you’ll need to be extra careful with watering and fertilizing your plants. You’ll also have to pay extra attention to them in other ways—for example, pruning or deadheading spent flowers. This takes time, but it’s not too much work if you spread out all these tasks over several days or weeks.
  • Shady beds require more space than sunny ones do (assuming your garden is big enough for both types). If you can only fit one type of bed in your yard, go for a sunny one instead! There’s no point in wasting precious real estate on a spot that isn’t getting any sunlight anyway!

Know your bed.

The first step to caring for a shady bed is to get to know it.

  • Know the sun exposure of your bed. It’s easy to tell where the sun shines in your yard, but you may not realize how much shade there is in other areas. Take time to observe throughout the day and take note of where the sun goes when it sets.
  • Know what plants will work in your beds. This might seem obvious, but knowing what plants will grow best in shady conditions makes it easier to choose appropriate varieties and design a garden that suits its natural environment. Most shade-loving plants are native to tropical or subtropical climates, so look for those with origins like these when planning out your garden layout: banana trees (Musa), bougainvillea vines (Bougainvillea spectabilis), hibiscus flowers (Hibiscus rosa-sinensis), palm trees (various species), ferns (many types).
  • Know the soil conditions of your bed—and test if necessary! Soil pH can have a big effect on plant growth; too acidic or basic soils may prevent roots from taking hold properly enough for proper growth rates aboveground; check out this article about soil testing kits if you’re interested in finding out more about how soil pH affects plant health before making any decisions about which kinds of plants should go into each area within one’s yard space!

Pay attention to how plants look at different times of day.

When you plant your shady bed, consider how the plants will look at different times of day. Different plants will look different in the morning and afternoon, so you can use this to your advantage when planning out your planting. For example, if you’re using shade-loving plants for some of your shady beds and want to see them during the day, try to plant them on top of a larger-leaved plant or something that has nice foliage colors that stand out against their leaves. This way they will be silhouetted against their leaves, making it easier for you to appreciate them when looking at them from afar (without having to get too close).

If instead you’re trying to admire these same plants up close — say because they have blossoms or fruit — then try planting them right next door so that in order for someone walking by on their way down into an entryway or hallway area they don’t miss those amazing flowers!

Add layers of interest.

It’s important to keep in mind that you should use a variety of plants, including trees. It’s also important to remember that different textures, heights and colors will create interest in your shady bed. Some flowering plants are great for the shade garden because they add color to an otherwise drab area. Another way to add interest is with ground covers. These plants can be used as borders around your plantings or as fillers in between them for a colorful look without having to worry about maintenance or watering needs!

Don’t forget the ground cover.

Ground covers are a great way to fill in the gaps between your plants. A good ground cover will help control weeds, erosion, and soil moisture. It is also important to remember that while you want more light in your garden, it is still possible to have beautiful flowers and vegetables without being directly under sunlight all day long.

Shady beds are not so bad if you choose the right plants and plant them properly

If you’re considering building a shady bed and are worried about the amount of light available for your plants, there are a few things you can do to ensure that your garden remains healthy and beautiful.

  • Know your bed: If it’s shady, chances are the soil will be dense, compacted or clay-like in nature. This means that it will hold water better than loamier soils but also retains less oxygen—good news for root systems but bad news for most plants’ growth. You may want to consider adding amendments like compost or peat moss to give plants more nutrients and help them thrive in these conditions (more on this later).
  • Pay attention to how plants look at different times of day: While some species prefer full sun others will thrive under partial shade so it’s helpful to understand which category each plant falls into before selecting them for your garden design plan​es​s​ionnement planning designing

3 . Add layers of interest: As mentioned above, one way to add visual interest is by layering plantings so that there are different heights within the bed itself rather than just one layer from front-to-back with no variation in color or texture throughout this space


Remember, the most important thing is to know what you’re doing before you start. If you have little gardening experience, it might be best to start small and work your way up (no pun intended). Don’t be afraid of failure—it can teach us a lot! So get out there and create some beautiful shady beds with these helpful tips.

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