Shade Tolerant Plants for Calgary

One of the most common landscaping related questions people ask is what can I plant in the shady areas around my yard or what are shade tolerant shrubs for Calgary? Most Calgary yards have some shady areas and many of them have entire front or back yards that are mostly in the shade due to the house itself or large evergreen or deciduos trees. So, having a good idea of what plants thrive in shady conditions is important. Shade tolerant plants for Calgary can be difficult to select. When the shade is due to evergreen trees it can create even more growing challenges due to the poor soil conditions created by the evergreens. Here are some varieties of shrubs and perennials that are proven to grow well in the shade in Calgary.

Dogwoods
Flowering dogwoods typically do well in shade. Yellow twig dogwoods especially thrive in shady conditions. Dogwoods usually grow to a height of 3′ or more and 3′ wide so make sure you have the room for them in your garden.

False spirea
False spirea are a great choice for your shade garden. They thrive in moist part sun-shade. The ashleaf false spirea has loads of flowers. The ashleaf spirea is know to spread so make room for future growth in your garden bed.

Hosta
Hosta’s are probably the best all round choice for shade plants in Calgary. Hosta’s really do prefer shade over sun and grow exceptionally well in wet shady conditions. The huge variety of hosta’s means you can dress up your shade beds with different flowering plants. The multitude of flowers that occur with hostas means you will have more than just greenery in your garden.

Burning Bush
Burning bush does well in part shade and has a beautiful bright red color in fall. This is one of the most popular shrubs in Calgary at the moment and are surprisingly hardy and do well through Calgary’s winters.
Cranberry
The american highbush cranberry prefers some sun but can tolerate mostly shady areas. These cranberries grow to a height of 4 ‘ and around 2’ wide. They can be easily pruned back and look very good when planted in groups of more than one. American highbush also makes a great hedge.

Here are some other good choices for shady areas around your yard.

Hydrangea
Northern Lights Azalea
P.J.M Rhododendron
Snowberry
White Cedar