Sun or Shade Exposure

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How Much Sunlight Do Your Plants Need?
Are you worried that your garden dreams might be dashed because your yard doesn't get enough sunlight? We can help you find plants that thrive in lower light and even in full shade. Read on to learn which plants are sun-loving and which ones prefer a shady home. 

Plants That Need Full Sunlight



The term "full sun" means six hours of sunlight a day, but sun-loving plants can soak up 12 hours or more of sunshine. If your zone is also dry, look for plants that are drought-tolerant. Plants that do well in full sunlight include: 

  • Flowering annuals like petunias, zinnias, marigolds and geraniums.
  • Perennials like lavender, dianthus, coneflowers, hibiscus, daisies and roses.
  • Most herbs and vegetables.

Plants That Thrive in the Shade



These plants need only four hours of sun a day to be perfectly happy. Even the shadiest garden usually has that. They include: 

  • Hostas.
  • Begonias.
  • Hydrangeas.
  • Lily of the valley.

Plants That Prefer a Mix of Sun and Shade



Most plants that bloom in the early spring prefer a mix of sun and shade. They do best when they're getting about six hours of sunlight a day with some shade in the afternoon. These plants are not as heat-tolerant as the full-sun lovers. They include: 

  • Lobelias.
  • Impatiens.
  • Spring bulbs like daffodils and tulips.
  • Blue ageratum.

Plants That Are Happy Either Way



These versatile plants are ready to bloom and thrive no matter where you put them. They include: 

  • Most succulents.
  • Ground covers, especially periwinkle.
  • Flowers like snow-on-the-mountain and Iceland poppy.

Find Plants for Every Spot in Your Garden



Don't let a lack of full sunshine keep you from enjoying your garden. With a mix of sun-loving and shade-loving plants, you can create a colorful, blooming garden anywhere.