When we first moved in, I thought our house faced due north. I’m used to houses that face cardinal directions, and it didn’t occur to me that with the house on the curve of the street, we probably didn’t. In fact, our house faces northeast. However, thinking that the front of the house was north and would thus be shady all day, especially with the large maple tree in the yard), I planned and planted a shade bed.
I started with a couple of bleeding hearts, a fern, and a variegated heuchera (coral bells). And the spring bulbs, of course. Over the years, I’ve added a couple more ferns, some hostas, lilies of the valley, and some more bleeding hearts. Then there are the plants that grow there naturally — the wild strawberries, the ivy, the dandelions (need to get those out), the dogwood volunteers (those, too), the grass (and that), the maple seedlings (and those!). I used small plants on the theory that given time, plants will grow to fill space.
It’s worked, as you can see.
The bleeding hearts will die back for the summer, and I do need to think of some plant to put there that will sprout later to fill that spot as the bleeding hearts fade, but overall, I like the bed, which doesn’t seem to mind at all that it gets plenty of morning sunshine and even some late afternoon sun from May through July. Now, if I just had the time to get out those things that don’t belong . . .