edible shade plants

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I have been looking everywhere for garden plants that will grow in the shade. I want to grow vegatables but my house is surrounded by large trees. Does anyone have a list of plants that might work?

-- buffy (buffyannjones@hotmail.com), May 05, 2002


The mints, beefsteak plant and goldenseal PLUS all the edible mushrooms. Scarlet cups, sulfur shelfs, Morels, Chanterelles, Sheepsheads, Tree ears, Dryad saddles and some Puff balls.

Don't forget ginseng.

-- Elizabeth Quintana (rockshelter@webtv.com), May 05, 2002.

Buffy, Some of the regular vegetable garden plants that normally like cool weather (lettuce & other greens, peas, etc.) will tolerate some shade. In fact I extend the growing season in my full sun garden by putting shade cloths and lattice over them. Even peppers seem to benefit by having some shade when it gets really hot. Just experiment with regular plants and see what happens.

One thing that you may not have considered however, is that it probably isn't the shade that is causing the problems as much as it may be the trees themselves. If the branches extend OVER your garden spot, then the roots undoubtably extend UNDER it. That means a lot of the water and nutrients are going to feed the trees instead of the vegetables. (There are also some tannins and other natural chemicals in some trees that actually inhibit growth beneath them - Black Walnuts, Red Cedars and Oaks are especially bad. I suppose you could try extra fertilizer, but you might want to consider either cutting some of the trees, or if that is not possible, using large containers for your garden. (At least with container gardening you can always move the plants to follow the sun!)

Good Luck!

-- Deborah Stephenson (wonkaandgypsy@hotmail.com), May 06, 2002.

Watch the sun, choose your target carefully, and trim out some of those branches! Be sure you have a lot of organic matter in the soil. Be sure there is good air circulation.

Gooseberries, rhubarb, mints, comfrey, cranberries, blueberries, elderberries will all grow and produce with some shade, moe or less.

Shade tolerant edible flowers include pansies, violets, johnny-jump- ups and other violas.

-- seraphima (seraphima@ak.net), May 06, 2002.

Swiss chard.

-- kathy h (ckhart55@earthlink.net), May 06, 2002.

Thanks Y'all.

-- Buffy in Dallas (buffyannjones@hotmail.com), May 07, 2002.

Here's an unusual one for you -- hostas.


-- julie f. (rumplefrogskin@excite.com), May 08, 2002.

I wasn't aware that hostas were edible. Is that accurate?

-- roberto pokachinni (pokachinni@yahoo.com), May 12, 2002.

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