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Shady Back Patio

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October 17, 2015
Shady gardens are always some of the most inviting. Let’s take a look at my friend Barbara’s shady back patio. Entering the patio you can’t help but notice what I think is the center piece, the gorgeous lace leaf Japanese maple which is a slow growing shrub-like plant. Upon closer inspection the fine dissected foliage has very intricate patterns. While Sunpatiens are marketed for the full sun, they work just as well in shady places. Look at this combination of white and orange Sunpatiens and the vigorous succulent stems of Purple Heart spilling out of the container. And how can you beat the massive collection of orange Sunpatiens underneath this rustic fountain. A plant that I enjoy growing that is perfect for this shady garden setting is the Australian Tree Fern. The stem and the veins of each upward growing frond, are covered in glossy cinnamon brown hairs. The broad fronds themselves are bright green with lacy triangular foliage. The orange impatiens are thriving under the ferns protection. Another tropical looking plant that is a great choice is the Majestic Palm. This is a robust plant with graceful feather-like fronds, and is right at home growing in a container. For good reliable shady color, you can’t beat angel wing begonia. The foliage is shiny green and the drooping scarlet flower stalks are perfect for enjoying in hanging baskets. So I hope you’ve gotten some ideas for your own shady back patio. I’m horticulturist Gary Bachman and I’ll see you next time on Southern Gardening.

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