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What can I plant in a low light, clay backyard? NC

6 years ago

Our somewhat small, fenced backyard is pretty heavily shaded all through, with only some sunny streaks. More problematic, it's entirely hard north carolina red clay, nothing on top. There is a sparse amount of some kind of tough grass on the flat areas but it's mostly exposed clay. There's also a good bit of patchy moss in the no-traffic areas which I love and water occasionally to encourage.

No interest in grass unless it's native species, in which case that would be neat. I really like the concept of a "moss lawn" though.

Anyone want to throw out ideas for shrubs, small trees, anything that may work back there? Also how successful have attempts to get vines/ivy on a (wood, privacy) fence in conditions like this been?

I'm open to the idea of uncomplicated raised beds too if this clay is just unworkable. Low-cost and relatively low-maintenance are priorities. There's also a mid-sized dog who likes to run in the backyard living here.

Thanks for any ideas :)

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