Top 10 Shrubs for Shade Gardens 

Large, spectacular blooms characterize shade-loving hydrangeas. Hydrangeas come in bigleaf, oakleaf, and smooth varieties with different flower colors and sizes.  


Azaleas are popular shrubs with exquisite spring blooms and lustrous foliage. They do well in partial shade and come in white, pink, red, and purple.  


Camellias are evergreen shrubs with glossy foliage and beautiful flowers that bloom late fall to early spring, depending on the type. Prefer moderate shade and acidic, well-drained soil.  


Compact and evergreen, Japanese pieris has beautiful foliage and cascading clusters of white or pink blooms in early spring. It likes acidic soil and moderate shade.  

Japanese Pieris 

Fothergilla, a deciduous shrub, has fragrant bottlebrush-like flowers in spring and gorgeous orange, crimson, and yellow fall foliage. It likes partial shade and acidic, damp soil.  


Virginia sweetspire is a multipurpose shrub with fragrant bottlebrush-like flowers in late spring or early summer and vivid fall foliage. It can handle full sun to full shade.  

Virginia Sweetspire 

Oakleaf hydrangea, a deciduous shrub, is admired for its big, oak-like leaves that turn crimson, orange, and purple in autumn. It grows in partial shade and has cone-shaped white blooms throughout June.  

Oakleaf Hydrangea

Depending on the cultivar, leucothoe has shiny green or burgundy foliage. It grows little bell-shaped flowers in spring and prefers moderate to full shade.  


Japanese andromeda is an evergreen shrub with leathery leaf and early spring clusters of white or pink flowers. It likes acidic soil and moderate shade.  

Japanese Andromeda

Mountain laurel, a natural shrub, has exquisite cup-shaped flowers in late spring to early summer. It likes partial shade and acidic, well-drained soil.  

Mountain Laurel 

Easy Perennials That Anyone Can Grow 

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