Are you struggling with landscaping the shady parts of your yard? You are not alone. Many gardeners struggle with finding plants that will look good and thrive in shade. Our Evergreen lawn care technicians will have creative and functional landscaping ideas for any outdoor space.

Having a beautiful and shady landscape is quite a magical thing to have in Texas during the spring and summer months. Once you get your garden going, you’ll find yourself choosing to retreat to your shade garden more often than your living room.

When you design your outdoor space, plan for color and growth year round. Shade tolerant evergreen shrubs are a practical place to start because they stay green all year long.

Evergreens are not just piney trees that you see at Christmas time. When you plant evergreens, your garden will have color all year long.

Here are some excellent shade-loving evergreens to get you started.

Dwarf Yaupon Holly

Holly Shrub.

Texas A&M University has named the dwarf yaupon holly as one of the “Outstanding Shrubs for Texas.” This shrub is shade and drought tolerant.

From winter to early spring, you’ll find bright, red berries growing all over. The foliage is dark green. This plant will brighten up your space all year long.

Dwarf yaupon hollies prefer a moist acidic soil. Fertilizer should be applied sometime in the spring. This is a compact shrub growing 3-4 feet tall and wide.

Dwarf Burford Holly

Dwarf Burford Holly shrub.

The dwarf burford is a shade-loving shrub that is similar to the dwarf yaupon. They both produce red berries, but the burford is a bit bigger. It is classified as a medium sized shrub and it grows to be about 8-10 feet tall.

This evergreen shrub is very low-maintenance and does not usually need to be pruned. Birds love to snack on burford berries.

Overwatering is a common problem with these shrubs. Water 2-3 times a week until your holly is well-established. After that, water is typically only needed during a drought. Dwarf burford hollies can survive on 10-20 inches of water a year.

Japanese Plum Yew

Japanese Plum Yew.

These shade-tolerant shrubs are also heat and drought resistant. Texas has extremely hot and dry summers, which makes Japanese plum yews a great addition to any garden.

The foliage is dense and dark green. This shrub grows upright and works well as a privacy screen, natural hedge, or accent plant.

It is a slow-growing plant and will end up around 2 feet tall and 4-6 feet wide. Water once a week, but more often in severe heat. The yew berries are reportedly poisonous if ingested.

Fatsia Japonica

Fatsia Japonica.

Fatsia Japonica, also known as Japanese aralia, is an evergreen shrub that will easily grow from 6-8 feet tall. These plants can also be trimmed to precisely fit a specific space. Here at Evergreen Lawn & Landscape, we’re happy to help out with all your shrub trimming needs.

The big, bright leaves of the fatsia japonica will make you feel as if you’re somewhere exotic. These jungle-like shrubs are an ideal addition to any landscape with full or partial shade.

The more shade these plants receive, the darker their foliage will be. When fall arrives, beautiful white flowers will start to bloom.

Japanese Aucuba

Japanese Aucuba.

Japanese aucuba, which is also called the gold dust plant, has green foliage sprinkled with gold speckles. The lovely blend of green with gold will make any garden pop.

Make sure you have a very shady area in mind for a Japanese aucuba. They cannot be exposed to direct sunlight.

This drought resistant evergreen shrub will grow about 5-6 feet wide and 6-10 feet tall. The gold dust plant is slow-growing, which means you will rarely need to prune it.

Final Thoughts

It can feel impossible trying to find hardy plants that are made for the shade. If you decide to try out some of the shrubs listed in this article, adding a pop of color to your garden will be easier than you think.

Spring is an optimal time of year to plant evergreen shrubs because the roots will have plenty of time to establish themselves before winter. Our Evergreen Lawn & Landscape specialists look forward to helping you with all your seasonal planting.