How to Landscape With Woodland Flowers

Build a soothing lawn or garden area with soft woodland flowers and plants to achieve a beautiful outdoor space.

This woodland planting gives a sense of calm serenity. The soft colors of the geraniums and foxgloves (Digitalis purpurea) mingle with the dark orange flower bracts of the Euphorbia and are striking against a sea of deep green foliage. These plants are ideal for a woodland situation: they can cope with the light shade and shortage of moisture that is caused by the canopies and roots of the trees. You will need approximately 10x10 feet (3x3 m) of space to grow these plants. These plants, which are best-suited for a woodland garden with shady, herbaceous borders, prefer free-draining soil and dappled shade.

Materials Needed:

  • 3 Foxglove (Digitalis purpurea) plants
  • 7 Brempat (Geranium Patricia) plants
  • 1 Dixter (Euphorbia griffithii) plants
  • gardening shovel
  • leaf mold or compost
  • gardening rake
  • watering can or gardening hose

Planting and Aftercare

Lightly dig up the soil, being careful not to damage any tree roots. Incorporate plenty of organic matter such as leaf mold or compost into the planting area, and then rake it level. Plant the geraniums in the center of the space, about 24 inches (60 cm) apart — they can spread rapidly. The Euphorbia can be planted in the foreground, and if you choose to plant any Epimedium, these should be positioned around the outside of the planting design to form a "foliage frame." The foxgloves should be dotted about among the geraniums toward the back of the design to give it some height. The plants should be watered in well. The geraniums and Euphorbia can be cut back after flowering since they are perennial. Since the foxglove is a biennial, it should be left to drop its seeds. Be careful not to get the milky sap of the Euphorbia on the skin because it can be an irritant and may burn.

Foxglove (Digitalis purpurea)

Drooping Foxglove Flowers

Drooping Foxglove Flowers

Photo by: DK - Simple Steps to Success: Lawns and Groundcover © 2012 Dorling Kindersley Limited

DK - Simple Steps to Success: Lawns and Groundcover , 2012 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Brempat (Geranium Patricia)

Violet Brempat

Violet Brempat

Photo by: DK - Simple Steps to Success: Lawns and Groundcover © 2012 Dorling Kindersley Limited

DK - Simple Steps to Success: Lawns and Groundcover , 2012 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Dixter (Euphorbia griffithii)

Wildflower Cluster

Wildflower Cluster

Photo by: DK - Simple Steps to Success: Lawns and Groundcover © 2012 Dorling Kindersley Limited

DK - Simple Steps to Success: Lawns and Groundcover , 2012 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Wisley (Epimedium x perralchicum)

Pink and Green Wisley Plant

Pink and Green Wisley Plant

Photo by: DK - Simple Steps to Success: Lawns and Groundcover © 2012 Dorling Kindersley Limited

DK - Simple Steps to Success: Lawns and Groundcover , 2012 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Keep Reading

Next Up

How to Illuminate Your Yard With Landscape Lighting

Create a stunning landscape that can be enjoyed during the day and night with inventive outdoor lighting solutions.

How to Plan a Landscape Design

Learn the four steps to creating a scale plan for your landscaping project.

How to Hire Landscaping Contractors

Know what questions to ask when choosing professionals to do your landscaping renovation.

How to Install Landscape Edging

Installing landscape edging can be easy if you follow the directions.

How to Landscape With Colorful Wildflowers

Decorate your lawn or garden with vibrant meadow flowers to achieve a beautifully random, informal feel in your outdoor spaces.

How to Landscape With Ornamental Grasses

Decorate your lawn or garden with ornamental grasses to achieve a free-flowing, modern feel in your outdoor spaces.

How to Plant Perennial Flowers & Plants

Perennials are the mainstay of the traditional flower garden. When planted correctly, they are long-lived.

How to Make Crepe Paper Flowers

Crepe paper is easy to work with and creates realistic flowers that are perfect for gift toppers or placed in a vase during spring. Make three different types — peonies, daisies and tulips.

Landscaping How-To: Taming Invasive Bamboo

Master gardener Paul James explains how to tame the most rampant runner, invasive bamboo.

1,000+ Photos

Browse beautiful photos of our favorite outdoor spaces: decks, patios, porches and more.

On TV

Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss HGTV in your favorite social media feeds.