Shade Tolerant Herb Garden

Herbs that prefer shade can be a boon to a garden which does not have sunlight in areas that are populated by heavy bushes and trees. Partial shade and restricted sun rays can be adequate for some herbs that do not bother the scarce sun thus giving you the option of growing a shade tolerant herb garden.

Shade-Garden-Wheel

Shade-Garden-Wheel

A perfect herb garden should ideally receive at least 3 to 6 hours sun light during the day. This includes the soft morning sun shine and not so harsh evening sun rays. It is also likely that not all parts of herb garden receive same amount of sun. Parts of the garden that remains under shade due to trees and shrubs need not remain barren, you can easily grow herbs that are tolerant to shade.

A garden that is not so perfect considering the amount of sunshine is alright for herbs like parsley chives and dill which will grow in partial shade. Other herbs like wild ginger, chervil, carom and angelica are more tolerant and can grow in full shaded regions.

Shaded Regions
Shade in the herb harden could happen to various reasons. Prominent causes could be tall buildings, the angle of sun rays that fall on the garden and tall trees. Tall structures will restrict direct sunlight completely in some areas of the lawn whereas trees can still permit pockets of sunlight through the gaps.

Advantages of Planting Herbs that Tolerate Shade
These herbs which grow in shade and partial sunlight do not get scorched in heavy sun rays. They therefore require less maintenance and water. Shade helps to keep the soil moist and prevents the earth from cracking.

Shade Types
Before considering herbs for a shade garden, it is prudent to understand what we mean by partial shade. If there is too much of shade during the length of the day and most of the area is dark, you might only be able to have wild or no growth. Hence at this point it is better to get a good knowledge of shade types.

Partial Shade – This part of the herb garden receives at least 4 to 6 hours of direct sunlight. It could be from the morning sunrays, afternoon sun or evening sunshine. At least four hours of this sunlight and warmth should be from the morning sun when the heat is less intense. In fact, partial shaded area will allow many herbs to grow adequately.

Complete Shade – This area never receives direct sunshine hence you must plan the herbs carefully for the completely shaded region of herb garden.

Filtered Shade – This area receives pockets of sunshine during day and is more or less adequate to herbs that can bear less sun in their life cycle.

Shade-Ideas-Inspiration-Shady-Gardens

Shade-Ideas-Inspiration-Shady-Gardens

Complete-Shade-Gardener-George-Schenk

Complete-Shade-Gardener-George-Schenk

Making-Most-Shade-Fabulous-Lightens

Making-Most-Shade-Fabulous-Lightens

The-Natural-Shade-Garden

The-Natural-Shade-Garden

If you are concerned with the growth of herbs in shaded area you can use mirrors for reflecting sunlight. This surely works for the area that is dark and cannot receive any direct sun rays from any angle.

The utmost factor needed in designing shade herb garden is the soil quality. Compensate the soil with organic compost and layers of home grown mulch. Don’t keep restricted to just herbs. Try to mix and match herbs like Angelica, Comfrey, and Mint with shade loving iris blooms. You can also plant wild ginger, comfrey and bishops weed with other shade loving plants like ferns and wild flowers from woods.

A true treat for a shaded herb garden is the mix and match you can provide with the companion plants. Blend in evergreen herbs with local wild blooms and you will have herbs throughout the season whether the sun is smiling in your garden or not.

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