Cyclamen will give you sharp bursts of colour
Not many plants will be happy languishing in the shade underneath a large tree, but some, such as cyclamen, positively love it! Why not make your own mini woodland with low-growing, sharp bursts of colour from these perennial favourites? Plus you can have different coloured species giving you flowers for six months of the year.
Be sure to choose hardy species, as detailed below. As for planting, space plants about 30cm (1ft) apart for a sparser look, and to leave room for naturalising, or you can plant densely at about 20cm (8in) for more wow factor. If you’re planting into a grassy area, dig out a small sod from the top of your planting hole, ready to be replaced later, then dig a hole deep and big enough for the plants’ root system. Try and dig in a little compost or leaf mould into each hole, to nourish the plants and water well.
Place the plants in, backfill with a little soil and replace as much of the top of the piece of turf as possible. If you’re planting into bare soil, mulch around plants with bark to suppress weeds and retain moisture. Over the next few years, your wild cyclamen spot will increase in size.