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Shade Loving Wildflowers

Older subdivisions and urban lots are often filled with shade.  Consider using woodland wildflowers for the shady areas in your yard.

Early spring flowers like Hepatica and bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis) have given way to a favorite mid spring bloomer, the trillium.  Its white flowers make it a standout in the shade.  And the unique flowers of Jack-in-the Pulpit (Arisaema triphyllum) are sure to catch the imagination of visitors while the beautiful Virginia bluebells (Mertensia virginica) provide nectar for the butterflies and hummingbirds. 

Canadian ginger (Asarum canadense) can quickly fill in and take over shaded areas.  The flowers appear at the soil line for ground insects to pollinate.  And the Merrybells (Uvularia perfoliata) are just starting to add color to the spring display.

Cultivated varieties of natives are sometimes included in natural plantings.  The colorful Solomon’s seal’s (Polygonatum odoratum ‘Variegatum’) leaves continue to brighten the shade after the white bell-shaped flowers disappear.

A bit more information:  Look to, but don’t collect from nature when creating a woodland wildflower garden.  Purchase plants native to your area and prepare the soil for planting.  Work to improve your soil by incorporating organic matter and using shredded leaves as a soil mulch.

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