By Melissa Brock, Business Development
Tim Drake is one of our “plant gurus” at The Greenery and he always shares his enormous knowledge of gardening and plants with a fun sense of humor and in “easy to understand” terms. So, what a great morning of learning and laughter we had when I participated in a presentation with Tim for the Avid Gardeners group in Hilton Head Plantation at the Spring Island Pavilion. He spoke about Shade Gardening in the Lowcountry – adding color, drama and texture to your shade garden. Over 50 people attended, BUT If you weren’t at the event AND still want to soak up some of Tim’s vast knowledge. Read on…
Tim’s top tip for Shade Gardening? He said to make sure your plant choices are truly ‘Shade Plants’ or ‘Shade Tolerant.’ There’s nothing worse than planting something in the shade that doesn’t perform.
So many of us feel like we have a black thumb, but don’t fear – there are many ‘fool proof’ plants. Tim suggested some of those plants would be: Elephant Ears, Giant Leopard Plants, Cast Iron Plants and Dwarf Podocarpus - just to name a few.
Elephant Ears are beloved for their dramatic foliage. Their huge “earlike” leaves can measure up to 5 feet across and the range in color from lime green to almost black. They can flourish as solo plants in the garden or in a large container.
Giant Leopard plants have large, rounded, shiny green leaves with yellow flowers that bloom on tall, branched stems. They also have thick leaves reaching up to 18 inches across and look great in beds under trees, in a shady border or a patio container.
Cast Iron plants are an extremely hardy plants that require very little attention, hence the name. They have healthy dark green leaves, great for dark, dusty places that are difficult to plant.
The most common mistake in shade gardening is putting shade plants in a situation that isn’t really truly shady. You want to make sure you don’t “roast” your shade-loving plant by exposing them to too much sun.
At the event, many of the attendees did not realize that there are many plants that are both shade tolerant and that the deer won’t bother. So many locals struggle with keeping deer from devouring their lovely plants. But there are options! The previously mentioned Giant Leopard Plants, Autumn Fern, Shell Gingers, and Podocarpus—all pretty much deer-proof!
The staff at The Greenery loves the opportunity for informal seminars and talks to share our plant knowledge and to give you tips for your own successful gardening. If you ever have a chance to attend an event with Tim Drake, you don’t want to miss it. Tim’s talks are always informative, interactive and he will brighten your day. You can contact Tim Drake, Landscape Enhancement Designer and Business Developer 843-785-3848 firstname.lastname@example.org.