See some of my favorite shade plants for pots that I use on my larger planter located on a shaded front porch. Many of these plants would also work well for a shady container hanging basket too.
Shade Plants for Pots You'll Love
I've been growing plants on my front porch in a large container for years. There's nothing like a pretty planter full of flowers to greet your guests. The problem is that this area is covered, and shrouded from the sun by a large red maple tree. It gets a tiny bit of morning sun but it pretty shaded the rest of the day. So I've had to experiment with shade loving plants in order to grow a lush and full planter. Here are my favorite shade plants for the front porch, and below I've made a short video with tips on planting.
It's hard to find flowering plants that do well in the shade. Sometimes you need to think outside of the box.
Here are a few tips:
- Use colorful foliage with interesting texture instead of only flowers.
- They don't have to be full shade plants. Try flowering plants that are marked part-sun or partial shade
- Increase your choices by trying houseplants, perennials, dwarf varieties in addition to annuals.
When it comes to planting my large front porch container I tried a few different variations. My all-time favorite is Lamium. This little guy grows without fail.
Lamium typically is sold with pretty white and green foliage and either purple flowers such as 'Orchid Frost' or white flowers like 'White Nancy.' However, many other varieties exist. There are pink flower varieties and a couple with golden leaves.
Look how big it grew last season from only two, 4-inch pots, over-flowing in front. At the end of the season, you can plant it somewhere in the garden, and often it will come back next year.
Depending on how harsh our winter is I can leave it in the same pot and it would come back next year.
Another favorite is this colorful Perilla Magilla growing in the back of the pot. It's similar to coleus with an upright habit but seems to be a more vigorous grower. Again, look how much it grew from one 4 inch pot in just a few months.
Perilla Magilla is considered a tender perennial, so around here in my Zone 6 garden, we use it as an annual.
Other Favorite Part Shade Container Plants
When designing container gardens for your shade-loving plants consider using the thriller, filler and spiller method.
- Thriller - One tall plant in the middle or back. (Perilla, Coleus, Rex Begonia, Grasses)
- Filler - Plants that will fill around the tall plant. (Impatiens, Fuchsia, Heuchera, Browallia, Coleus, Begonias, Torenia, Ferns)
- Spiller - Plants that will trail or vine over the sides of your container. (Lobelia, Bacopa, Sweet Potato Vine, Lamium, Trailing Fuchsia, Creeping Jenny)
The bottom line is, even if you have a shady spot on your porch or patio, color and blooms can still be grown with the right plants and a little creativity.
More Shade Loving Plant Ideas
Is Sunlight Your Issue?
This Full Sun Planter Ideas post might be right for you.
What is the name of the plant that looks like a heart shaped ivy, white center with green on the edges? I would love use that in one of my container groupings. It is lovely and rather unusual.
I found it. Lamium. 🙂
Lamium is the best performers in the pot. It comes in a variety of colors, even a gold one. This one is called Orchid Frost. Does really well in low light and sometimes over winters for me. They sell it with the annuals in nurseries here I think it is a perennial.
Where do you go to find the plants mentioned above? Home depot doesn't carry them.
I did buy mine at a local nursery. Several were proven winners though and you can search for a store near you through their site here: https://www.provenwinners.com/retailers/locate. Home depot should have some begonias and maybe a coleus instead of the perilla magilla.