In the Garden: 3 perennial flowers, not named hosta, for shade

BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) Looking for some perennials to plant for a shady spot? Gardening expert Charlie Nardozzi shows us how to go beyond hostas.

Sharon Meyer: Look at the foliage on some of these plants, beautiful!

Charlie Nardozzi: One of the problems gardeners often have is they have a shady spot and they want to plant perennials there to brighten it up, but they don't know which ones to grow. So you can always grow hostas, but lets go beyond hostas. Here are some nice examples of shade loving plants that have beautiful foliage. The big array behind me are all Heucheras or coral bells. They have been doing a lot of breeding on coral bells. You can get some with chartreuse leaves, with a burgundy color leaf, and with purple and silver leaves. And they flower, too, with these airy nice little colorful blossoms that kind of dance above the foliage.

Sharon Meyer: I especially like those lemony lime colored leaves.

Charlie Nardozzi: They will really brighten up a dark area. And that's what's nice about these coral bells is that they will stay that bright color all through the season. You don't have to wait for the flowers to get a big bang of color. Now there are other options, too. If you want something that has some nice heart-shaped leaves, these are Brunneras, They have little blue flowers and are very cute. And this one will spread, too, staying in a clump shape as it spreads around. This plant is called Tiarella. It's actually related to the coral bells. You can see a similarity with very flowery little blooms and nice cut leaf foliage. This variety has kind of an orange color to the foliage and some little buds coming. And then finally, we have the ones in the front here.These are ajuga.

Sharon Meyer: Those are spectacular, look at the leaves and the flowers!

Charlie Nardozzi: Yes, and before you scream at the TV, yes, I know they're invasive, so you've got to be careful where you plant them. A lot of people try to get the ajuga out of their lawn because it ends up invading as a weed. This one is called Burgundy Glow. It has beautiful burgundy-colored new foliage and blue flowers. If you plant it in the right place, where you can contain it, it does really well. Just don't plant it somewhere where it can take off, because you'll be cursing me afterwards.