Shrubs that like the morning sun are considered part shade plants. The shrubs grow very well with three to six hours of morning sun and afternoon shade. Shrubs that perform well with eastern sun exposure include evergreen, deciduous, flowering shrubs and ground cover shrubs, which grow in different United States Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones.
Many deciduous shrub varieties prefer morning sun. The hydrangea is a hardy shrub for USDA hardiness zones 6 to 9 that thrives with morning sun and afternoon shade. Other deciduous shrubs include the viburnum varieties Burkwood and the Koreanspice, which are hardy in USDA zones 5 to 8. The Burkwood viburnum is an ornamental shrub with a round canopy that becomes more distinctive as the shrub matures. The shrub has darker foliage on the top and lighter foliage on the bottom.
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Boxwood varieties are ideal for locations with the morning sun and afternoon shade. These evergreen shrubs are hardy in USDA hardiness zones 5 to 9. Other evergreen shrubs for an eastern exposure location include rhododendron and azalea varieties including Exbury azalea varieties. Exbury azalea shrubs prefer full to partial shade, which makes this plant ideal for a location with morning sun. Shrubs grow in an upright direction and have the appearance of a vase-shape.
Ground Cover Shrubs
Many ground cover shrubs prefer afternoon shade and morning sun. Shrubs that grow in USDA plant hardiness zones 3 to 6 include dwarf holly and the box huckleberry. The box huckleberry has toothed glossy, thick leaves that closely resemble the Japanese boxwood. The shrub is self-sterile and produces fleshy dark blue berries that have no taste when mature.
The American Red rhododendron is a flowering shrub that prefers eastern sun. The bright morning sun will enhance the flower color. Shrubs have red, funnel-shaped flowers and matte, dull green leaves. Other flowering shrubs include the fothergilla, which has creamy-white flowers with a honey scent. Fothergilla shrubs are hardy to USDA zones 5 to 8.
- University of California; Hooray for the Shade; Eve Keener
- Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service; Shrubs for Shady Spots; Bart Cardwell
- University of Missouri Extension; Growing Azaleas and Rhododendrons; Christopher Starbuck; May 2002
- Clemson Cooperative Extension; Plants for Shade; Karen Russ; October 2004
- Center for Plant Conservation; Box Huckleberry (Gaylussacia Brachycera); Will Cook; March 2011
- Iowa State University Extension; Spectacular Spring Flowering Shrubs; Cindy Hayne; April 1999