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Muncie, Indiana, United States Us

Advice - Shady or sun? I have a pathway area on the North side of my house. I was considering the area as shady because it doesn't get direct sun, but it seems that my neighbor's plastic white fence (privacy fence) is reflecting quite a bit of light onto the area. I had put in ferns and hostas the year before last. The ferns didn't make it, but the hostas did. I don't know if the ferns died because of the light or just poor gardening. Sunlight doesn't touch the area directly, but it's pretty bright during the day. Do you think a white plastic fence would reflect enough light for me to consider that area as fairly sunny?



No it is still shade. There is different types of shade, depending on how much direct sunlight the area gets. My front garden is also north facing and my house block direct sunlight onto it all winter (sun is higher in spring and summer than winter). There is still a patch that never gets direct sunlight whatever the season. The area is still light though (sounds similar to what you describe) though.

Hostas are a very good choice. Ferns like dark and damp, perhaps your neighbourhood is too dry ferns? I would plant shade plants in your garden and not any that need direct sunlight.

29 Mar, 2011


No it doesn't count as sunny, sorry! I agree with Kildermorie. You could continue to use the "lighten up" effect by using plants with white flowers and / or variegated leaves. Then the area would seem brighter, just as you've noticed with the neighbour's fence, but the actual light there will still be comparatively low.
Lilies of the valley and white flowered japanese anemones could be nice added to the hostas - and hostas themselves are available in lots of different forms and leaf markings.

29 Mar, 2011


Thanks a bunch. I will try the suggestions this year. Everything in my garden is trial and error, so I'm willing to give things a try until something sticks :)

29 Mar, 2011

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