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Native Wildflowers for shade

Updated: May 24, 2023


Most people associate typical Irish native wildflower meadows with large sunny fields with poor soil. Indeed most wild flowers thrive best on full sun (anything over 6 hours of direct sun) and shady position could be one of the factors contributing to failure to establish native wildflower meadow especially if you sow the wrong mix.

But there are many species of Irish native wildflowers that will do perfectly fine and even require semi or full shade to grow well. One of the most recognized would be Irish native bluebells and foxgloves. Both are woodland plants that thrive in shady conditions. Other native wildflowers like Cow Parsley, Wild Angelica, Sorrel, Red Campion, Primrose and many more will also grow well in semi or full shade. All of these wildflowers are present in native wildflower seed mix as Gardens for Wildlife Irish Native Wildflowers: Orchard mix and are best suited if you have some shady area.


Irish Native Wildflowers for shade are bit more tricky to establish compared to wildflowers grown on field or sunny patch in the garden. With sun loving native wildflowers you just remove the lawn and sow the seeds. Many woodlands and woodland edges are full of briars, nettles and ground growing ivy which create lot of competition and are harder to clear off.

Many woodland species also takes more years to establish before flowering so patience is required. But when you are successful it is that much more rewarding.

If you can clear a small patch to expose soil, have mini woodland with clear ground, shady spot near the hedge or wall, or you are establishing a new woodland or orchard you have great chance of success to establish the wildflowers with the right seed mix and attitude.



How to sow: sow onto bare soil. Sow seeds in 2 direction for even distribution. Rake lightly and roll or walk over seeds to achieve better contact with soil. Do not bury the seeds

When to sow: Sow in autumn or in spring

Happy gardening


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