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Gardens With Little Light

If your garden space carries too much shade. don't give up on it. The Early Show's gardening guru Charlie Dimmock shows how plants, flowers, and some gardening tricks can bring even the darkest corners to life.

She tells co-anchor Harry Smith if the shade is dense, do not even try to grow plants that need sun. Instead, use bits of wood, a birdbath, bark, and upright wooden structures to add interest and drama to the landscape, and create a woodland jungle rather than a tropical one.

If there is a little light, Dimmock recommends building a woodland garden featuring bark chips, logs, moss, lichen, and mushrooms.

For dappled light, she showed floral plants such as rhododendrum, astilbe, hydrangea, lamium, lily of the valley, lilies, and hostas.

"They all tend to be subtle coloring, whites and pastels," Dimmock notes, "You can get all different types of ferns with different foliage colors. When you plant ferns, try and put them in crevices between the wood-timber. It makes it look much more natural. And top-dress it with the bark and it looks like it's been there forever."

Just note that with minimal light and low temperatures, plants will be slow growing.

Dimmock says, "The one thing with lily of the valley, it takes a while to establish. You've got to go with it and let it do its own thing. Once it's going, leave it alone."

Plants requiring virtually no light are Aucuba, ferns, ivy, moss, euonymous, and bergenia.

Especially in the summer, Dimmock notes, it is good to have a shaded garden. She says, "People go, 'Oh, we must sit in the sun.' When it's really hot, the one place you don't want to sit is in the sun. So sit somewhere that's nice and shady; lots of greens make you feel cool and relaxed."

As Smith notes, the only thing missing is lemonade.

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