Evergreens That Grow in Dry Shade

Evergreens are great additions to the garden because of their ability to keep their leaves. While most evergreens prefer full sun, some will grow in partial shade as well. These evergreen shade plants are great for partial sun locations that can benefit from year-long foliage and beauty.

Oysterplant

Oysterplant, Tradescantia spathacea, is from the spiderwort family and is also called boatlily, men-in-a-boat, and Moses-in-the-cradle. It is an evergreen perennial that is easy to grow and drought tolerant. It has 6- to 12-inch long leaves that are succulent and forest green and purple in color. Flowers and seeds are produced all year round, blooming white flowers in boat-like bracts. Plant this evergreen in light shade or bright sun in any moist soil, but it can tolerant some drought. Propagate via cuttings, offsets, or by seed. It is grown in USDA hardiness zones of 9 to 11.

Coontie

Coontie, Zamia pumila, is from the coontie family and is also known as comfort root, compties, arrowroot, or Seminole bread. It is an evergreen perennial that is easy to grow and drought resistant. It is palm-like and grows 3 feet tall with a suckering mound 5 to 6 feet wide. Leaves are 3 feet long and dark green and fern-like. Plant it in full sun or dense shade in any soil. Propagate via seed and grow in USDA hardiness zones of 8 to 10.

Asparagus Fern

Asparagus fern, Protasparagus densiflorus, is from the lily family and is also known as foxtail fern or emerald fern. It is easy to grow, drought resistant, and fast growing. Leaves are light green and feathery and grow 2 to 6 feet long. Mounds can get 2 to 3 feet in height and 3 to 4 feet in width with white flowers and red berries. Plant this fern in bright light or partial shade with regular watering. Propagate via division or seed and grow in USDA hardiness zones of 9 to 12.

Devilwood

Devilwood, Osmanthus americanus, is from the olive family and is also known as wild olive or American olive. It is a fragrant evergreen that is also drought tolerant. Leaves are leathery and 2 to 6 inches long with white flowers in clusters. The entire plant has a potential to get 50 feet tall but is usually 10 to 20 feet tall. Plant devilwood in partial shade to full sun in any soil. Propagate via seed or tip cuttings, and grow in USDA hardiness zones of 5 to 9.

Confederate Jasmine

Confederate jasmine, Trachelospermum jasminoides, is from the dogbane family and is also known as star jasmine. It is an evergreen fragrant vine that is easy to grow and drought tolerant. It can climb up to 40 feet and has glossy leaves 2 inches long and oval. Flowers are white pinwheels, fragrant, and 1 inch wide. Plant this one in bright sun or partial shade in well-drained soil. Propagate via cuttings, and grow in USDA hardiness zones of 8 to 10.

Keywords: evergreen, shade plant, evergreen shade plants

About this Author

Tina Samuels has been a full-time freelance writer for more than 10 years, concentrating on health and gardening topics, and a writer for 20 years. She has written for "Arthritis Today," "Alabama Living," and "Mature Years," as well as online content. She has one book, “A Georgia Native Plant Guide,” offered through Mercer University; others are in development.