Foliage plants are the backbone of any garden.  These are plants that are grown for their leaves instead of their flowers.  As great as flowers are they are not permanent.  That flowering perennial might have 2 weeks or 2 months before the flowers are gone and all that’s left is some ratty looking leaves.  In the last few years foliage plants have become more popular in the everyday garden.

Hosta plants are one of the most popular foliage plants.  These plants are popular in the shade garden.  Hostas do get flowers but the flowers are boring and not that interesting.  Hostas come in many colors and can be solid colored or variegated.  These great plants come in green, blue, orange, and yellow.  It is important when choosing a hosta to get one that will work in your garden.  Some like sun and some like shade.

Heuchera plants are just starting to get some serious color going.  The common name for Heuchera is Coral Bells.  There has been a serious explosion of color happening in the world of Heucheras.  They come in green, purple, red, yellow, black, and silver.  Heuchera plants like part shade, shade, and full sun depending on the variety.

Aucuba japonica is commonly called gold dust plant.  This plant can be grown in the house as a houseplant or in a semi shade garden as a shrub.  This plant has green leaves with yellow speckles.  This is a very attractive shrub that can be pruned to keep it small or allowed to grow to its full height.  Acuba japonica shouldn’t be grown in zones colder than 7.

Ferns are a great addition to any garden.  Ferns have large leaves and can be grown in the shade.  One popular type of fern is a Painted Fern.  These are colorful ferns that can be found in most garden centers. 

Grasses can make a bold statement in the garden.  A large clump of showy grass will draw the eye.  There are grasses of all sizes, colors, and shapes.  Choosing a grass that is native to your area will help to attract wildlife to our garden.

This is a small list of foliage plants.  There are so many out there that I couldn’t even begin to list them all.  Pick up a few plants with great leaves this year and get started on the next phase of your gardening adventure.