Small Shrubs That Love Shade

Updated November 21, 2016

Small shade-loving shrubs create decorative appeal to landscapes in rainy areas like the Northwest. These species don't need a lot of sun to thrive, and they flourish in the rain and shade. Some shade-tolerant shrubs like bleeding hearts have also adapted to sunny conditions, so there is no need to worry when the summers become intense.

Dwarf Fothergilla (Fothergilla gardenii)

The dwarf fothergilla is a small shrub that only grows 2 to 3 feet tall and wide at full maturity. It prefers partial to full shade, but it can also tolerate the sun. It produces clusters of white flowers in the spring, and the flowers turn red, yellow or orange in the fall. This shrub grows well in a variety of different soils such as moist, well-draining, neutral and slightly acid. Plant this shrub along your front yard walkway or bordering your backyard.

Common Snowberry (Symphoricarpos albus)

The common snowberry is another small shrub that loves the shade. This plant grows 3 to 6 feet tall, so it's not quite as miniature as some shrubs, but it's still small and compact. The foliage is dark green and oval shaped, and small spikelike pink flowers appear in the spring. It also produces small white non-edible berries in the fall. This plant prefers moist, well-draining and alkaline soils.

Slender Deutzia (Deutzia gracilis)

The slender deutzia is another small shade-loving shrub. This beauty only grows 2 to 3 feet tall and it tolerates rainy, shady conditions in addition to full to partial sun. This shrub thrives in moist, well-draining soils. Slender deutzia produces white flowers in the spring, and the foliage is tiny, slender and light green. It is also a low growing, compact shrub that has a rounded appearance.

Dwarf Boxwood (Buxus sempervirens)

The dwarf boxwood is another miniature shade-loving shrub to include in your garden. This shrub only grows 3 to 4 feet tall and about 5 feet wide. This small, hardy shrub tolerates cold weather well and needs minimal care and pruning. Plant your dwarf boxwood in moist, well-draining soil and only water if there is an extreme drought.

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