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I have this little place in my backyard in front of my back porch that doesn't see a lot of sunlight during the day, and it is constantly growing with weeds. Today I dug it up pretty good and pulled out all of the weeds except small stuff like clover grass and such. What I'm wondering, is what would be a good plant to put there that doesn't need a lot of sunlight, looks good, is pretty hardy as far as adverse conditions, and doesn't require a lot of effort? Here are some pics to maybe help with the decision. I am totally a gardening noob and have no desire to garden, but this is to make my wife happy and make the place more sell-able. The soil is a mix of clay and sand, so the grass doesn't grow well, and because Tallahassee is hilly, our backyard allows water to pool and kill the grass in places. I need to do something to get it looking half decent. All input is welcomed and appreciated!!!




I'm also wanting to plant something along the garage. This part of the backyard see's A LOT of sunlight. Same thing applies to the above paragraph, just the opposite situation.




Thanks guys!
 

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The water pooling can be a problem for most any plant. Whatever you plant can get Blight and rot. Plants that are always wet are subject to catching bateria and become diseased. Keep in mind that whatever you do plant that you want to stay out of there when the plants are wet. You can carry bateria on your clothes when you weed it and be self defeating.

I would think you need to get a better drainage situation if you want to grow anything in there. If you can do that, you can plant green leafy salad vegetables in shady areas where the ground is always moist and holds some water. But pooling is out. Lettice, Endive. Spinach can all be planted in shady areas and only need to be weeded every week so the plants are not over run and choked. Its not a lot of work after you get the ground prepared and seeds are not expensive. If you don't like salad material I'll drop back 10 and punt.


Mike T.
 

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Go by Lowes or where ever and get some impatiens as they are easy and look nice and others like geraniums,begonias, merigolds. All of them are easy and have nice flowers and grow close to the ground. Till the soil with a shovel at least 6 to 10 inches deep just so it is soft for root growth. Plant them and give them some water with the hose in the morning or afternoon if they have not gotten any rain. These are flowers lol not veggies but I find my wife likes flowers better most times and it is late to get tomatoes started in Florida.
 

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The water pooling can be a problem for most any plant. Whatever you plant can get Blight and rot. Plants that are always wet are subject to catching bateria and become diseased. Keep in mind that whatever you do plant that you want to stay out of there when the plants are wet. You can carry bateria on your clothes when you weed it and be self defeating.

I would think you need to get a better drainage situation if you want to grow anything in there. If you can do that, you can plant green leafy salad vegetables in shady areas where the ground is always moist and holds some water. But pooling is out. Lettice, Endive. Spinach can all be planted in shady areas and only need to be weeded every week so the plants are not over run and choked. Its not a lot of work after you get the ground prepared and seeds are not expensive. If you don't like salad material I'll drop back 10 and punt.


Mike T.
Where I tore up the ground to make sure there were no weeds, it doesn't pool up there at all. Where it pools is all around the 2nd and 3rd step in the picture, so we're clear there.

As far as planting anything, it doesn't have to be anything edible... most just looking at something pretty, flowery or not.
 

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2nd on the impatiens. They're easy, don't take much care, and bloom all season. They will spread from seed, so you will have more and more but they are easy to thin with a weedeater or roundup.
Or put down some landscape fabric with pine straw to cover it, then poke holes for whatever you want to plant. That's how I manage my flowerbeds. I hate weeding but I like gardening so I try to find easy ways to do things.
 

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If it were me I would do raised beds and fill with good soil. On the clay and sand you can put mulching down or rock. Either would help with drainage. Then you can plant whatever you would like but I would do a vegetable garden. Strawberries would be nice. You could also plant hostas.
 

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If you want pretty plants that have some real use, plant tabasco pepper plants in the sunny side. Lots of green peppers early, that turn yellow later, then orange and finally red. By late summer, early fall you'll have a nice green plant with all four colors of peppers standing at attention like little candles. Pack them in the little sprinkler jars with vinegar and have some of the best pepper sauce known to man for sprinkling on the greens you grow on the more shaded side of the house. We planted Tabasco peppers in the front for decoration for several years ... but I make a lot of hot sauce and pepper sauce every year, so the peppers also came in handy (never used more that 5-10% of the peppers). I used to grow 8-10 varieties of peppers every year, but none can match the tabasco for sheer beauty (or production).

In the areas that may pool a bit of water, you could lay out some small beds with cross ties and fill in with good soil to elevate a bit. Leaf lettuce, greens, okra and even a lot of varieties of tomatoes will produce well with only a few short hours of direct sunlight.
 
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I have an area on the north side of my house that gets little sun and we made it an herb garden. My wife and I do a lot of cooking with fresh herbs so we planted mint, basil, oregano, thyme, cilantro, etc. It was the perfect spot for those things, but I'm in northern New Mexico, not Florida so your mileage may vary.
 

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Regardless of what you plant, spade in some bagged top soil. Lowes and others sell it. Raised beds work well but can drain and get dry faster.

The shady spot is great for hostas and they will easily winter over in FL. Just don't plant where deer can get to them.
 
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I had about the same problems, try planting some herbs there. Thats what ive done and they've done well, and they are handy for cooking also. I dont think you you can kill thyme, rosemary or such. Mints did well in my spots also, but they will take over sometimes.
 

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I'm a little North of you, I'd recommend a ground hugging type ivy, takes no fertilization and very little care, will keep the soil from washing away, it likes shade, can be easily removed if you get tired of it. If you have a water pooling problem sprinkle out a container or 2 of red wigglers (fish bait) they'll loosen packed soil, provides good aeration for drainage and plants.
 

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I'm a little North of you, I'd recommend a ground hugging type ivy, takes no fertilization and very little care, will keep the soil from washing away, it likes shade, can be easily removed if you get tired of it. If you have a water pooling problem sprinkle out a container or 2 of red wigglers (fish bait) they'll loosen packed soil, provides good aeration for drainage and plants.
What type of ground hugging ivy? Sorry... like I said, I'm a noob at this.
 

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I'm not familiar with the known names but will suggest if you look around some government building (Tallahasse is full of them, LOL) and Banks you'll see what I speak of, if your lucky you'll catch a landscaper doing his routine around those buildings and you can ask them, they'll be happy to tell or even make a better recommendation.
 
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I'd just make me a square looking raised border out of some 4x6 treated post's and put what ever yall want in the thing .... Rock garden with a small water foutain , Bushes of some type , Tomato . ect.ect ect..... Let the Mind wonder :tee:
 

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En lugar con poco sol y tierra arcillosa y con mucha agua, plantaría Hortensias, les gusta mucho ese terreno, no necesitan mucho cuidado pero si mucha agua, por eso les viene bien el terreno arcilloso, para la parte de mucho sol, plantaría como te a dicho algún compañero antes, cepas de uva, pero mira a ver si las puedes plantar de enredaderas o "parras" como se las llaman por aquí, necesitan agua y al ser de enredaderas en un lugar de sol, te daría la sombra debajo de ellas.

Un saludo.


Instead with little sun and clay soil and lots of water, would plant Hydrangeas, really like this area, do not need much care but if a lot of water, so it suits them the clayey soil, for the part of a lot of sun, as you would plant to such a partner before, strains of grapes, but I look to see if you can plant vines or "vines" as they call them here, they need water to be creepers in a place of sun, you would shadow underneath them.


A greeting.
 

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There's always kudzu. :flute:
 
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