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Growing Veggies in the Shade

April 23, 2019

Summertime sunlight and bountiful gardens go together like peas in a pod. But what happens when you don’t have a spot in your yard that gets enough sunlight? You grow vegetables that thrive in the shade with some advice from Oregon State University Extension Service and Washington State University Extension.

Download Some Gardening Guides

Depending on where you live in the Northwest, there are a few guides that can help maximize your garden location, soil additives, and a lot more. The pros at Washington State University Extension have put together their Home Vegetable Gardening in Washington guide, and the folks over at Oregon State University Extension Service have shared their Growing Your Own. Included in both you’ll find information about containers, where to plant, when to plant, and how to get the most from your garden.

Know Your Sun Exposure

Trellised plants, trees, buildings, fences, and hills can all cast long-lasting shadows on whole parts of your property. Knowing where those locations are is a good first step in determining where to plant your shade-loving vegetables.

As you map out your yard and property, notice how many hours each section gets during the day. When you buy plants or seeds you’ll notice sun exposure recommendations. These include full sun, partial sun, and full shade.

Full sun means plants should receive 6 hours or more of sunlight during the day.

Partial sun means plants need anywhere between 3-6 hours of sunlight per day.

Full shade indicates that the plants flourish on less than 3 hours of sunlight per day. In some cases, they need no direct sunlight at all.

Planting in the Shade

There are benefits to planting in the shade, including the chance to grow cool-season crops during the summer, avoiding bolting that can occur in high heat, as well as minimizing bitter leafy vegetables.

Some of the best choices for the Northwest include the following:

  • Asparagus
  • Beets
  • Bok Choi
  • Broccoli
  • Brussels Sprouts
  • Cabbage
  • Carrots
  • Cauliflower
  • Celery
  • Garlic
  • Kale
  • Leeks
  • Lettuce
  • Peas
  • Potatoes
  • Radishes
  • Rhubarb
  • Rutabaga
  • Spinach
  • Turnip

Plus, some herbs grow very well in the shade, including the following:

  • Basil
  • Catnip
  • Chives
  • Garden cress
  • Horseradish
  • Lemon balm
  • Mint
  • Parsley
  • Rosemary

Grow Your Garden with Coastal  

You’ll find just what the country needs at your Northwest owned and operated Coastal. Stop by and pick up packets of shade-loving seeds, starts, and plants. Looking for flowers to add some color to your yard? You’ll find them at Coastal, along with hoses, fertilizer, soil additives, hand tools, as well as pet supplies and food, work clothes, boots, lawn mowers, water troughs, and fencing. Get in today and go home with everything you need.