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Plants for the East Side of the House

geranium image by Konstantin Kaschenko from

The eastern side of a house is the side that gets the morning sun, which is a cooler and a much less intense heat and light than afternoon sun. Plants that grow best in these conditions are plants that do not require more than four to six hours a day of sun. Plants on the east side of a house are also shielded from some of winter's harsh winds and coldest temperatures.

Shrubs for Morning Sun

The glossy abelia is a semi-evergreen bush that produces 1/2-inch white blooms from mid-May through the first frost. The small-leaved boxwood is an evergreen shrub with small, shiny leaves and forms a tightly compacted hedge when trimmed regularly. Native to the southeastern U.S., oakleaf hydrangeas grow well on the eastern sides of buildings where they will get afternoon shade, flowering throughout the summer and into the fall.

Groundcovers for Partial Sun Areas

The evergreen wintercreeper is a groundcover that grows 1 to 2 feet tall and carries dark green leaves measuring 1 to 1-1/2 inches. When new growth appears in the fall, the foliage starts off purple, then turns to green. Lilyturf is a dark green, semi-evergreen groundcover that blooms from early fall to late fall. Lilyturf is also known as monkey grass and grows in large clumps with long slender leaf-like foliage. In fall, it produces long spikes of blue flowers.

Flowering Annual Plants for the East Side of the House

Annual plants are often used in planters or to add large splashes of color to gardens. Annuals suited for planting on the east side of buildings include wax begonias, browallia, lobelia, alyssum, geraniums, petunia, nasturtium and pansy. Each of these are fast-growing annuals that work well mixed in containers together.

Flowers To Plant On The East Side Of A House

Hollyhock (Althaea rosa) is a short-lived perennial but attracts birds and butterflies and works well against walls. If you prefer perennials that can serve as ground cover or border plants, plant the low-growing "Thriller" lady’s mantle (Alchemilla mollis "Thriller"). It grows in USDA zones 3 through 9. The plants with bright red bracts are also drought-tolerant. They can withstand the half day of direct sun of east-facing flowerbeds and grow in USDA zones 6 through 10. The annual wishbone flower (Torenia fournieri) has a dramatic appearance with purple edged white flowers with yellow throats and a wish-boned shaped stamen. Some of the most familiar bulbs, such as tulips (Tulipa spp. ), daffodils (Narcissus spp.) Tulips and crocuses grow in USDA zones 3 to 8. Tulips bloom in almost every color except for blue. In warmer climates, it's often better to treat these bulbs as annuals.

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