19 Best Outdoor Indirect Sunlight Plants for Containers & Shade Gardens

Raul Cornelius is a Senior Editor at BalconyGardenWeb and an expert in flower and herb cultivation based in Phoenix, Arizona. A frequent speaker at horticultural events, he is also an active contributor to Facebook flower groups. Holding an MBA and a BCom, Raul blends his gardening skills with strong leadership and analytical abilities. Passionate about writing and photography, he enjoys early mornings with coffee and books, and nature bike rides during weekends.
Learn About Our Editorial Policy

2-Minute Read

Tired of most container plants with a ‘Needs full sunlight’ tag? Here are the Best Outdoor Indirect Sunlight Plants for Containers!

Looking for beautiful specimens that you can display outdoors in dappled light? Here is a list of the Best Outdoor Indirect Sunlight Plants for Containers that will help you out!

Take a look at the Best Shrubs for Containers here.

Outdoor Indirect Sunlight Plants for Containers

1. Begonia   


Botanical Name: Begonia spp

Most Begonia varieties are grown mainly for their unique striking foliage. The plant produces frilly and large flowers for months and loves to thrive in indirect sunlight. 

2. Persian shield

Botanical Name: Strobilanthes dyeranus
If you are looking for an attractive foliage outdoor plant that loves shade, then go for this one! In the right growing conditions, it displays silver and purple blooms.

3. Coleus

Outdoor Indirect Sunlight Plants for Containers 2
Botanical Name: Coleus scutellarioides
Coleus is best known for its several layers of shades and spikes of lavender and blue flowers. This plant prefers partial shade from bright sunlight and is quite tolerant to heat. 

4. Caladium                                                                                             

Botanical Name: Caladium bicolor
Coleus looks charming with its stunning leaves in any shadowy corner. However, this gorgeous plant is toxic, and you should place it out of reach of animals and children. It is one of the best Outdoor Indirect Sunlight Plants for Containers!

5. Fuchsia                                                                                                 

Outdoor Indirect Sunlight Plants for Containers 3
shutersstock./Tatiana SG
Botanical Name: Fuchsia spp.
You can find Fuchsia in various shapes and sizes, with double or single-bi-colored flowers that sway like tall earrings in the breeze. It flourishes in indirect sunlight. 

6. Oxalis

Botanical Name: Oxalis spp.
Grow this plant in any spot with indirect sunlight and relish the beauty of yellow, pink, white, or red flowers in clovers. The stunning leaves of this plant are a bonus too!

Look at the Best Outdoor Plants with Purple Leaves here

7. Creeping Jenny

Outdoor Indirect Sunlight Plants for Containers 4

Botanical Name: Lysimachia nummularia
Creeping Jenny is usually sold as a ‘Spiller’ for containers, and it attractively cascades over the edges of the container or a hanging planter. It gets best color in bright indirect light.

8. Ivy

Botanical Name: Hedera spp.
Ivy is one of the Best Outdoor Indirect Sunlight Plants for Containers. To add to its look, you can grow it in tall or wide containers and pair it with colored foliage plants on this list.

Know all the advantages of growing a container garden here

9. Elephant Ear Plant

Outdoor Indirect Sunlight Plants for Containers 5

Botanical Name: Colocasia

With heart-shaped, large leaves borne on fat stalks, this plant can look interesting. It is best to grow it in big-sized containers outdoors in tropical and sub-tropical places.

10. Impatiens


Botanical Name: Impatiens

Impatiens is a common succulent with contrasting dark green leaves, stems, and vibrant flowers, it looks beautiful. About 3-4 plants can thrive well in a 12-14 inch container.

Find out the Best Shade-Tolerant Rose Varieties here

11. Croton

Botanical Name: Codiaeum variegatum

This plant can display various leaf colors in red, bronze, green, gold, and yellow. It is quite a champ when it comes to growing in shade but gets the best color in bright indirect light.

12. Wishbone Flower


Botanical Name: Torenia

Wishbone Flower or Torenia Fournieri is a bushy, low-growing annual that usually grows 6-12 inches tall. It is most valued for its potential to bloom even in shaded conditions.

Look at some Modern Vine Wall Ideas here

13. Chameleon Plant

Outdoor Indirect Sunlight Plants for Containers 7

Botanical Name: Houttuynia cordata

A chameleon plant can grow well in a pot in a spot that enjoys partial, indirect sunlight. It produces dark blue-green leaves blotched with pink, red, and cream.

14. Hosta


Botanical Name: Hosta

This plant shows off ribbed, large leaves in a cluster at the base. This plant is often prized for its heavily fragrant flowers in summer. It is one of the best Outdoor Indirect Sunlight Plants for Containers!

15. Calla Lily

Outdoor Indirect Sunlight Plants for Containers 10

Botanical Name: Zantedeschia aethiopica

Calla Lily is a semi-evergreen perennial or herbaceous that grows from rhizomes. The plant features tubular flowers with pointy tips and finger-like, long spadix at the center.

Check out some Small Flowering Vines for Trellis here

16. Ferns

shutterstock/thitima khudkam

Botanical Name: Tracheophyta

Ferns grow best in temperate and tropical areas and thrives equally well on rocks and soil. You can display them in hanging baskets too for an added appeal.

17. Heuchera

Outdoor Indirect Sunlight Plants for Containers 33

Botanical Name: Heuchera

Heucheras are popular for their robust, gorgeous foliage. They are ideal for a container garden with a wide range of intense colors and need low maintenance.

18. Philodendron


Botanical Name: Philodendron

Grow Philodendrons outdoors in containers in indirect sunlight for their gorgeous foliage. You can find cultivars that are red, coppery, and purple too.

19. Chinese Evergreen

Outdoor Indirect Sunlight Plants for Containers 55

Botanical Name: Aglaonema

The Chinese Evergreens belong to the genus Aglaonema and are tropical Asian perennials. With colorful or silvery patterns on leathery leaves, these plants are durable and tolerant.

Learn some Fantastic Ways to Hang Plants from the Wall here

Recent Posts

Join our 3 Million Followers:


Related Articles


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here