Shrubs for Shady Sites

When selecting shrubs for the home landscape, gardeners should carefully examine growing conditions at the planting site. Most shrubs perform best when grown in areas that receive partial to full sun. However, there are shrubs that can be successfully grown in partial shade. (Sites in partial shade receive 2 to 4 hours of direct light.) A list of deciduous shrubs that can be grown in partial shade is provided below.

  • Bottlebrush Buckeye (Aesculus parviflora)
  • Common Sweetshrub (Calycanthus floridus)
  • Summersweet Clethra (Clethra alnifolia)
  • Pagoda Dogwood (Cornus alternifolia)
  • Gray Dogwood (Cornus racemosa)
  • Bush Honeysuckle (Diervilla lonicera)
  • Dwarf Fothergilla (Fothergilla gardenii)
  • Large Fothergilla (Fothergilla major)
  • Vernal Witchhazel (Hamamelis vernalis)
  • Common Witchhazel (Hamamelis virginiana)
  • Smooth Hydrangea (Hydrangea arborescens)
  • Panicle Hydrangea (Hydrangea paniculata)
  • Virginia Sweetspire (Itea virginica)
  • Japanese Kerria (Kerria japonica)
  • Spicebush (Lindera benzoin)
  • Alpine Currant (Ribes alpinum)
  • Common Snowberry (Symphoricarpos albus)
  • Indiancurrant Coralberry (Symphoricarpos orbiculatus)
  • Arrowwood Viburnum (Viburnum dentatum)
  • Blackhaw Viburnum (Viburnum prunifolium)
  • American Cranberrybush Viburnum (Viburnum trilobum)
Page References: 

Links to this article are strongly encouraged, and this article may be republished without further permission if published as written and if credit is given to the author, Horticulture and Home Pest News, and Iowa State University Extension and Outreach. If this article is to be used in any other manner, permission from the author is required. This article was originally published on July 12, 2006. The information contained within may not be the most current and accurate depending on when it is accessed.