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Not all areas are blessed with an abundance of shade for the gardener who might want to do a little shade gardening.
If you live in the plains states, the desert or even in a brand new housing development, shade could be in short supply.
Even if you plant trees around your home, it's going to be several years before they are developed enough to provide shade to be adequate for the varying types of shade gardening.
We won't, in this article, go into why you might want to garden in the shade if you don't have a ready supply of shade.
However, suffice it to say that for the gardener, shade gardening is just one more type of gardening to enjoy.
If you don't have shade in such a situation, then it is up to you to make some shade.
Look around your home and take advantage of what you already have.
The north face of your home can provide some shade.
Even the east side of your home will provide some afternoon shade that will accommodate certain shade loving plants.
This depends on where you are located and just how hot it gets before the sun no longer shines down on the east side.
You must be aware that even after the east side of your home is in the shade in the afternoon, the walls may still be radiating heat.
This ongoing heat will not create the best environment for some shade loving plants, as the heat will continue to dry out the area.
Many shade plants prefer a somewhat moister environment than most sun lovers do.
Addition of mulch will, of course, help this out some.
Observe these sides of your home before planning your shade garden for you may find the angle of your home allows harsh sunlight into these areas for too long a time.
For instance, my own home has a slight tilt toward the east allowing the sun to shine on the mostly northern face for many more hours at the height of summer.
And here in the high plains, it gets very hot very quickly.
Remember that in the summer the sun will be almost overhead for quite some time.
No shade gardening on this northern side without some help.
Extending the roof of your home by such an extent as to create a shaded area can provide such help.
Perhaps a wall can be extended in such a manner for several feet and a covering of some type added to provide a little nook to accommodate the shade lovers.
When thinking of coverings, consider creating a pergola upon which to grow vines to provide shading.
Not only can you create wooden trellises to shade area, these days you can invest in shade cloth structures, or shade houses, as well.
You will find shade gardening in these circumstances, of little to no shade, to be another of the gardener's trial and error efforts that can make gardening so much fun.
Just experiment and remember you can always change things and just decide to grow sun lovers after all.
Copyright 2006, Sandra Dinkins-Wilson

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