Grow Fruit and Vegetables…in the Shade!

Grow Fruit and Vegetables…in the Shade!


[Music] Hello! One of the things we are often asked is “What can I grow in a shady part of the garden?” Well, the answer is – a surprising amount! Shade certainly throws up some challenges, but that doesn’t mean you
can’t grow your own fruits and vegetables there. In this video will show you
what can be grown in shady parts of the garden and share some top tips of the trade
for maximizing the light your garden does receive. Even shady gardens will normally receive
at least a couple of hours’ sunshine a day. The secret to coping with shade
is to make the most of these windows of direct sunlight. In most climates, seedlings need as much light
as possible in order to start off strongly. so prioritize the sunniest
parts of the garden for your seedlings. Grow them in pots and module trays
within cold frames or start seedlings off in a seedbed, then
transplant them to another part of your garden once they are bigger and better
able to cope with lower light levels. If you’re starting seeds early in the season, using full spectrum grow lights indoors can give them an early boost
before you gradually introduce them to the outdoors. Make the most of available light
by reflecting it into shadier parts of the garden. Paint walls and fences white,
or add mirrors and other reflective surfaces such as shiny metal or foil to
bounce light back into these darker areas. It’s important to remember that
shadier corners will be slower to warm up in the spring, so use cold frames, cloches and row covers
to warm up the soil earlier on in spring. They can also be used to extend the
growing season later on in the autumn. Slugs and snails can be more of a
problem in shady areas, so set up plenty of beer traps and delay laying mulches until the weather has properly warmed up. There’s a lot you can grow in shade. Leafy crops such as lettuce, arugula or rocket, chard and kale will be more than
happy with just three to four hours of sunshine a day. For areas that receive morning sun,
then afternoon shade, try vegetables such as carrots, celery and
dwarf or bush beans. Look for areas which receive sunlight above ground level. Areas that are shaded in the morning but sunny by afternoon are perfect for climbing vegetables like beans, climbing peas and outdoor cucumbers which, given the correct supports, can grow upwards out of the shade and into the sunshine. Never overcrowd plants. Allow plenty of space between plants to help maximize
light penetration, which in turn will reduce the risk of disease. Currants, gooseberries and sour (or acid)
cherries are the best fruits to grow in shade. Rather than allowing them to form
bush shapes, train them against a wall as single stemmed cordons, or as fans. Training the stems this way ensures the branches are well-spaced, so that light can reach all parts of the plant,
rather than just the edges. Walls and fences can also be painted white
to reflect light back onto the leaves. You can give them a further boost
by allowing a little more room than normal – an additional 1 or 2 feet (30-60cm)
between them will reduce any risk
of further shading from neighboring plants. Soil in shady areas can be cooler
and wetter, particularly if you have heavy soil, so before planting your fruit dig in plenty
of well-rotted garden compost to help improve drainage. Cane fruits such as raspberries and blackberries
can also cope with some shade. Again, the secret lies in ensuring
there is plenty of space between canes for both light penetration
and to avoid damp, stagnant air. Our Garden Planner makes it very easy
to choose crops suitable for shadier areas. Simply click on the Custom Filter button, then select the ‘partial shade tolerant’ option, and click OK. The selection bar now displays just those
crops suitable for growing in these conditions. Let’s go ahead and choose this endive. Click once to select it, move the cursor to where we want to grow it, click to place, and then adjust its size
and positioning using the corner handles and cursor. So you see, there’s plenty that can be grown in shade. If you have a shady part of the garden
then let us know what grows well for you – just drop us a comment below. And for more advice, helpful hints and gardening know-how, don’t forget to subscribe. I’ll catch you next time. [Music]