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What to do?
#97639 February 13th, 2007 at 12:03 AM
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I apologize in advance if this question has already been answered. I've browsed this forum some, but did not read every thread.

Anyway...my backyard is about an acre in size. It's mostly covered with huge oak trees, and as you can imagine oak leaves. The sun filters through somewhat in most of the yard, but no areas of full sun. Living here in Florida where we are, the soil is mostly sandy. If we rake up all the leaves, can I plant some type of grass that is good in shade? Or is there some other kind of ground cover that will thrive in these conditions and also be easily maintained? And nice to look at? Yeah, I know I'm asking a lot, but surely there must be something. I've thought about Oxalis, but don't know if there will be enough sun for it. I know it spreads like crazy and I like the little pink flowers. What do you guys think? Thanks in advance for any advice you have to give.

Re: What to do?
#97640 February 13th, 2007 at 04:39 AM
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there are a ton of plants that do well in shade.

ferns, hosta, lily of the valley.

here's a link for lists of things to plant in the shade be sure to check out the other links on the page too!!

Re: What to do?
#97641 February 13th, 2007 at 05:24 AM
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Quote
If we rake up all the leaves, can I plant some type of grass that is good in shade?
Linny,

I've had pretty good luck with the 'Sports Turf' grass in my shady areas. Duh

Re: What to do?
#97642 February 13th, 2007 at 04:26 PM
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Linny,
My favorite combo for dappled shade like you describe is vinca major or minor (which, of course, gets loaded with pretty purple blooms and is evergreen in the south) with azaleas planted randomly. Both do real well under oak trees (which are not noted for treating underplantings very kindly). Vinca will cover your ground very nicely and can be made to behave by mowing wherever you don't want it.

Re: What to do?
#97643 February 13th, 2007 at 09:59 PM
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Oak trees resent having their roots disturbed so stay well outside of where the branches end when doing any planting.

Contact your local extension service for a list of native plants and plants for sandy soil or that require little moisture.

Rather than grass, consider a park like setting for your yard like irregular beds of ground cover and perennials like hosta and lady's mantel mulched with chopped oak leaves. You could do a varieties of one plant per bed. Use paths of bricks or mulch for walking and gardening.

Watch for area plant exchanges. A great way to meet area gardeners and get free plants.

Re: What to do?
#97644 February 17th, 2007 at 09:30 PM
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Thank you for the great ideas and tips. I found lots of plants I loved from the link Joclyn gave me, and looked all the others mentioned. There are some very pretty ones. I really appreciate you guys. I LOVE the park setting idea. That really appeals to me herbalyn. I cannot wait to get started. I plan to buy some of all the plants mentioned, and want to plant some of that Sports Turf around the back door. Good luck with your shade garden patches. Would love to see some pics. Thanks again everyone. You guys are so knowledgeable. I just love this forum!

Re: What to do?
#97645 February 18th, 2007 at 12:53 AM
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no thanks needed - always glad to help a fellow gardener out!!!

just be sure to post some pics...befores and afters!!!


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