Florida is known for being hot and humid which is not ideal for gardening. But just because you live in Florida, doesn’t mean you can’t have a lush and colorful garden. The key is to choose plants that do well in the temperate Florida climate.
The USDA has designated four hardiness zones in Florida; 8, 9, 10, and 11. These zones are based on average minimum temperature and help gardeners choose plants that will be able to withstand the climate. Picking plants that do well in Florida’s zones will help your garden flourish.
Luckily, there are many beautiful plants that can tolerate indirect heat and thrive in shaded areas. The experts at Another Bloomin’ Nursery share their top 15 plants that are perfect for shade growing in Florida. These low-maintenance plants will add lots of greenery and vibrant pops of color to your yard.
1. Oyster Plant
The oyster plant is a stunning ground cover for any yard that needs a burst of color. This short plant has long green leaves with a bright purple underside. This easy-going plant prefers partial shade, but can survive in various light conditions.
2. Heliconia Plant
Few flowers are more exotic than the Heliconia plant. Its bright orange and red blossoms can be enjoyed almost all year-round; from spring to fall. Plus, there are so many eye-catching varieties to choose from. Most Heliconia varieties thrive in direct sun, but the Heliconia Red Christmas prefers full shade or partial sun.
3. Variegated Ginger
Variegated ginger is known for its beautiful foliage which can be distinguished by its contrasting green and yellow stripes. This plant loves the warmth and can grow to be anywhere from 4-10 feet tall in Florida’s hot climate. This plant will grow in partial shade or full sun- just be sure to give it plenty of water during the growing season!
4. Tibouchina Urvilleana
This tall tropical plant can make quite an impressive addition to any yard with its striking violet blossoms. This versatile plant grows easily in full sun and acidic soil, but can also thrive in partial sun and high humidity. Reaching between 8-10 feet in height, this sprawling evergreen grows best when regularly watered.
5. Philodendron Selloum
Philodendrons give your garden a lush, jungly feel with their large, deeply-lobed leaves. They can grow in a variety of light conditions, including full or partial shade. These magnificent tropical plants provide ample shrubbery that looks great when planted around patios, balconies, pools, and/hot tubs. However, philodendrons contain toxins that should not be ingested, so be careful with young kids and animals!
6. Butterfly Iris
The butterfly iris is not just a pretty perennial. This white-blossomed plant is known for attracting nearby butterflies, hence the name. Not only that, butterfly irises are surprisingly tolerant of drought and poor soil conditions once they have matured. This low-maintenance plant will grow to roughly 2 feet tall and can survive in partial shade or full sun.
Beat the winter blues by adding some beautiful camellias to your backyard oasis. These exquisite shrubs are adorned with bright flowers that bloom during the colder months. They come in different varieties, including white, pink, orange, and red blossoms. These compact shrubs grow best in full or partial shade and don’t require a lot of pruning to keep them at bay.
8. Pinwheel Jasmine
Pinwheel jasmines make for a charming addition to any shaded lawn. Their dark glossy leaves and delicate white pinwheel-shaped blossoms will blend in well with the surroundings. This medium-sized shrub will grow anywhere between 3-5 feet.
9. Areca Palm
Areca palms give a beachy tropical feel to the yard. These feathery palm plants can grow to be 30 feet tall if properly cared for. Although they love the humid Florida climate, areca palms do not do well in direct sunlight. For maximum growth, they should be planted in partial shade. Too little sun will stunt their growth, while full sun will cause them to turn yellow and sunburnt.
Pentas make a great addition to any flower garden because their bright pink blossoms are perfect for attracting pollinators. Pentas love the heat so this may be the best plant for you if you live in zones 10 and 11. While other flowers wilt, they are in full bloom during the hottest part of the year.
Caladiums bring color to a garden with their unique foliage. These plants are known for their pink, green, and white leaves. They grow to be about 1 foot tall and come in many different varieties, each offering vibrant color contrast. This plant thrives in humid regions, but does not do well in direct sunlight.
12. Red Sister
Add exotic flair to your garden with the red sister plant. This plant has rich magenta foliage and will grow to be 3-4 feet tall. You’ll want to put this stunning plant on display, but be sure to place it in an area that allows for full and partial shade.
13. Peace Lily
Although they have elegant white blossoms, peace lilies are surprisingly hardy. They are very drought tolerant and will die if you water them too much. These exquisite plants prefer some sun and will not bloom fully when completely shaded.
Peperomia plants are similar to the popular rubber plant, but smaller in size. They have distinctive green-striped leaves that add a nice contrast to shaded areas in your yard. This versatile plant loves the shade, but it also does well as an indoor plant.
15. Aztec Grass
Aztec grass closely resembles the Spider plant with its long white and green leaves. You can use it to spruce up the edges of a path or walkway. This plant loves partial shade and will grow to be 12-18” tall.
Shopping for Plants Just Got Easier!
Ready to spruce up your garden today? Another Bloomin’ Nursery has all your plant and landscaping needs covered. We make it easy to shop for the best shade-grown plants- and more. Come find out why we’re one of the top-rated nurseries in Green Cove Springs, Florida!
We’re also proud to announce that coming soon, you’ll be able to order our plants for pick-up or delivery on our website