Simple Plant Combo for Part Shade

This simple but highly effective planting combination for the woodland garden relies on three low-maintenance, easy-to-grow plants offering a variety of leaf shapes and textures and a pleasing seasonal progression. In spring the vivid yellow new growth of the wood rush is electric, providing an energetic jump start to the season and makes a classic pairing with the bold, blue foliage of Hosta 'Halcyon'. The large, coarse leaves of the dwarf oakleaf hydrangea contrast with grassy groundcover. This dwarf variety of the oakleaf variety produces ivory panicles of bloom in summer which take on blush to pink tones as they age. In fall, the Hydrangea quercifolia 'Munchkin' takes on red tones with contrast beautifully with the neighboring blue and yellow foliage. Substituting another dwarf oakleaf hydrangea, such as H. 'Sike's Dwarf' would work equally well.


Growing Conditions

Zone: 6, 7, 8, 9
Exposure: Open Shade, Filtered Sun, Morning Sun, Part Shade, Part Sun, Full Shade
Water Needs: Average

Design Considerations

Style: Naturalistic, Northwest Eclectic, Woodland
Features: Varied Foliage, Texture, and Form, Fabulous Foliage, Fall Color
Focus: Mixed Border, Pleasing Seasonal Flow, Small Space
Seasons of Interest: Spring, Summer, Fall, Pleasing Seasonal Changes, Three Seasons of Interest

Care and Maintenance


Maintenance Level: low

Plants In this Combo

  • Hosta 'Halcyon'

    Halcyon Hosta

    Type: Perennial
    Exposure: Full Sun, Part Sun, Full Shade, Part Shade, Filtered Sun, Morning Sun, Open Shade
    Zone: 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9

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  • Hydrangea quercifolia 'Munchkin'

    dwarf oakleaf hydrangea

    Type: Shrub
    Exposure: Full Sun, Part Sun, Part Shade, Filtered Sun, Morning Sun, Open Shade
    Zone: 5, 6, 7, 8, 9

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  • Luzula sylvatica 'Aurea'

    Golden Wood Rush

    Type: Grass / Grass-Like, Perennial
    Exposure: Part Sun, Part Shade, Filtered Sun, Morning Sun, Open Shade
    Zone: 6, 7, 8, 9

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