North-facing gardens are considered a bit of a nightmare for anyone looking to earn their green thumbs, as they make growing many plants completely impossible. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t cultivate an awesome and varied garden if it’s north-facing, you may just have to be more creative with your choice of plants.
Palm plants are beautiful leafy plants that can thrive in low-light conditions, but they have very different needs depending on the kind you get. Parlour Parm (as the name suggests) is a very popular indoor plant but can grow in even the shadiest part of any garden. Not only that but if it does happen to catch enough sun, then it will sprout a cluster of beautiful yellow flowers come springtime. Make sure to only water when the soil around it is dry, however, as overwatering may kill the plant.
Umbrella Papyrus is maybe the most famous palm plant and its evergreen nature makes it the perfect choice for a north-facing garden. This leafy green ornamental plant will continue to thrive all year round, simply find it a dark or boggy corner to call home. If there is no especially moist corner for it, then simply place its pot on a tray of water, or take care to make sure that the soil is consistently damp.
Ferns Wonderful Ferns
Ferns are another excellent choice for a garden that doesn’t get much sun, as they are low maintenance but look anything but. For example, the maidenhair fern has beautiful glossy leaves that trail like a beautiful lady’s hair, which can add a delicate touch to any garden. Just be sure to strike the balance between watering frequently and not overwatering, dig a small hole in the soil and check the moisture levels if unsure.
Sword fern may not be as delicate, but it is the perfect companion, providing a knight in shining armour for the maiden behind it. This evergreen plant looks just as if it constantly has its swords drawn for battle, and is a bright, almost eye-popping, green colour. This plant will do best if placed in a well draining pot full of acidic soil and will benefit from regular misting as it loves humidity.
Climbers & Creepers
Vines and other trailing plants are famously resilient, and so they are another plant to consider if you want to give your north-facing garden some variety. Creeping fig lends any garden an air of magic and mystery with its two-toned, leathery leaves, and will cling to any surface or wall that it comes across. Not only does this special plant not need much sun, but it also doesn’t need much water, so be sure to let the soil dry out between watering spells.
Devil’s Ivy may sound sinister but, in Asian countries, it is more commonly known as the money plant, and is a very popular houseplant. However, it is also easily resilient enough for an outdoor lifestyle, and its yellow-flecked leaves will surely prove popular. Not only that, but it is remarkably efficient at pulling harmful carbon monoxide from the air, making it even more perfect for urban settings with a lot of air pollution.
Of all the kinds of plants on offer, growing flowers in a north-facing garden may be the hardest thing to do. With that said, there are still plenty of good options on offer to add colour and fragrance. Kalanchoes are a cheerful and robust plant with flowers that last and last, and they thrive in partial sunlight and dry conditions. In fact, overwatering is the worst thing you can do to them, making them one of the most low maintenance options out there.
Orchids are another flower with a surprisingly long bloom life, and they don’t need much sunlight or much attention in order to do well. if treated properly, orchid blooms can last up to ten weeks, and only need to be soaked once every two weeks. Aside from that, they thrive in indirect sun, so you can pretty much just leave them be. If orchids aren’t your favourite but you’d still like to add a popular flower to your garden, then peace lilies are another bloom that love shady conditions.