Will Andromeda Survive In Shade And What Else Can Be Planted In Complete Shade

Question From: Centerport, New York, United States
Q: Hi Nancy, I am planting andromeda in an area virtually without sun. I know I will probably not have much blooming but will the plant survive? And thrive? I do not know what other plant I can use. The space is well protected from winter wind and soil is good but it has 100% shade. Will my andromeda (mountain fire) survive? What other plants could I use in this space?

A: I planted an Andromeda on the north side of my home under the canopy of huge maple. It got just a tad of reflected afternoon sun, but not much. It thrived and did bloom. Sun is not the only issue. Water and soil quality are also issues. Every location is different. Some viburnums, oak leaf hydrangeas, Summersweet (Clethera alinifolia and Canadian Hemlocks are all possibilities. Some of these plants require acidic soil. Large ferns are also a possibility. Your county extension service should also be helpful. And a good independent nursery that specializes in shrubs will also be helpful. Good Luck and Happy Yardening, Nancy