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Talkback: Growing veg in shade

Sorrel is lovely crop to grow in shade, even dry shade. In my garden it grows under a clematis montana which grows under an ornamental cherry. It requires no real attention and produces tangy, lemony, tender, heart shaped salad leaves that are delicious mixed with other leaves in a salad. It also provides good ground cover so keeps weeds away. What more could you ask?


  • Sorrel also has fantastic light and airy flowers, great in any border or veg patch.

  • happymarionhappymarion Posts: 4,591
    Red flowered and white flowered runner beans together up wigwams in the middle of my eight new raised beds once they are built with concentric circles around them of coloured chard, pretty salad leaves, flowers for cutting, lavender at the corners, potatoes round the edges - get the idea, Kate? A potager!
  • I gre pumpkins last year for the first time down the allotment they did so well i am growing 4 times as many this year! I had ten plants last year and 15 pumpkins so 40 plants this year should give me at least 60 pumpkins. :) Some people think i am barmy and maybe i am.

    I will also grow onions and shallots potatoes, runner beans, courgette and braod beans plus the odd little bit of salad too.
  • If I did grow crop's in the garden it would be left to rot as you can alway's buy it in the supermarket so I am informed by Mrs Oldchippy.
  • I have a ne facing plot which is also very exposed to wind but I managed to grow white flowered runners beans last year and got a reasonable crop ( plus they looked v attractive and. Made me feel like a proper gardener!). The site was mostly shady. I also do wel, with potatoes grown in bags, again they don,t get much sun but I think if the soil is quite warm it doesn't seem to matter too much. This year I'll take pink heather 's advice and try sorrel!
  • Probably plants which tends to bolt such as lettuce, pak choi, parsley (mushrooms). They seems to cope better in a shade. We had reasonable results with french beans, peas, nasturtiums, swiss chard. Carrots were a bit small. We also grow runner beans on sunnier part and sweet peas on the shady part to provide at least a bit of interest. Courgettes planted in previous years struggled in cold summers and suffered from mildrew in the shade. They also searched for light so I thought why not to try a climbing courgette "Tromboncino" as it might get more light and sunshine in the higher position. After reading the article above, I also will try to grow brocoli in the shade.
  • last year i grow some cucumbers in the shade balcony i had so much crops! it was great!!
  • This sounds like a great idea. If you don't like having broccoli in your border though why not try Brussel Sprouts: they are such beautiful plants and put up with some shade.

    I have a lot of shade in my garden and find that Raspberries work well. I'm trying Loganberries too which are meant to cope.

    A lot of my herbs seem to be reasonably tolerant: Sage, Rosemary, Marjoram and Mint are all easy going though I wouldn't try Thyme or Basil.
  • Crimson flowered broad beans are great - not heavy croppers and don't like too much shade, but in a north facing garden, in a mixed border, they did pretty well last year and the flowers are lovely.

    Agree with Smauel and Pink Heather about Sorrel - try blood veined sorrel too as its foliage is really attractive. Also, lettuces as alternatives to all that weird yellowy heuchera plant - at least you can eat lettuces and can get some really pretty ones like green or red salad bowl. Red mustard is also a nice salad crops with pretty leaves.

    I grow a lot of globe artichokes in my garden too - they are supposed to want a lot of sunshine, but they seem to do OK in my north facing plot where they get some sunshine, seem to come back happily each year, but are now getting ready for replacing. They do much better than cardoons and I think they are nicer looking too - more dramatic foliage. They are architectural, growing so tall, and left to stand over the winter, the flower heads look spectacular when covered with frost. Edible, ornamental, add height to your border.... what more could you ask for?
  • when does the new series of gardeners world start?
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