SUN vs SHADE SHOPPING TIPS

Questions to consider before heading out to buy plants:
 
Figuring out what the best choice of plants for your yard is fairly easy with the help of cell phones and tablets for pictures, knowing roughly the size of the area and how much sun the area gets, we can narrow down the options to the best suited items without having to do an onsite visit.

  • Is your landscape more formal, straight lines and organized? Or is it more natural with free form shapes and patterns?
  • Take a couple of pictures for us to get the general idea of the area.
  • Rough measurements are good to know. It is not rocket science and measuring beds exactly is not easy.  General size of the space is good enough.
  • Is the area sun or shade? This seems to be the tricky question when we ask, but also the most important one for deciding what selections will work best.

Sun VS Shade:

  •  When we talk about sun, we are normally talking about our Texas summer sun. It is on a different path during the middle of the summer.
  • Full Sun:  Would be any area that gets all day sun, or even sun from about 11am until 5pm or so. This is the hottest sun of the day and will do the most damage to plants that are not able to handle it.
  • Morning Sun: Sun until about 11am or noon. Areas that get the sun in the morning but protection from the brutal afternoon blast may be the most fun and versatile places to plant in.  The half of day of sun allows them to flourish and bloom, but not get fried during our summer heat waves in the afternoon. 
  • Shade: This category has many levels and can be confusing:
  • Filtered Shade:  This area would be under a canopy of trees with light filtering through and allowing some light in but a majority of the time the direct sun is blocked. This area is great for a few of the items that bloom like Begonias and Impatiens.   Colorful foliage always goes nicely in here as well.
  • Total Shade:  The areas under patios or heavy dense canopy where zero sun filters through can be more of a challenge.  The light can be blocked by buildings or other structures but the end result is the same, not enough “foot candles” or lumens pass through to encourage most flowers to bloom. This area is best suited for foliage. Mix in colorful items like caladiums, Dracaena’s, Ferns and ivies.  All different colors and textures blended together can create as much interest as a bed full of blooming flowers with a little thought and creativity.  
Of course the most common way to shop is by the seat of your pants, with no game plan and total impulse buying. It is more fun for sure that way, but let us help make sure what you do buy at least has the best chance of living and thriving for the area it ends up planted.