plants around deck?

Hi folks, I'm new here.. Last year we had our deck rebuilt (added real footings) so this year I want to plant something that will fill out and cover up the space between the ground and the decking cause it just plain looks bad the way it is. deck is on the north side of the house, soil is quite sandy (live on a lake) well shaded most of the day. Deck is about 3 feet above ground level we live in the middle of minnesota, and I'm thinking I would like to plant ferns. How close together do I need to plant to get a good "fill" within a couple years... Is there a better option?? TIA
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On Fri, 27 Feb 2004 10:06:02 -0600, Michael Moss wrote:

Ferns are great but they do tend to turn a bit ugly as summer progresses. Pachysandra, vinca, grasses work. Hostas, too. Depending on size of bed, you can always change the soil to meet plant needs. Ajuga and brunnera work as groundcover. A mix of things.
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start with a lot of mulch, then small low hostas and painted ferns. I would think about it as a "room" and "furnish" it in a sorta "bonsai" way. So maybe a small lantern with an auto on/off, an itty bitty path thru it. some bamboo screening, etc. make it a small interesting focal point that maybe kids (small kids) might find enchanting. Uhhhh.. well as long as you dont have dogs. LOL. Ingrid

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level
I have a similar situation. I have had good luck with spirea 'little princess', day lily 'Stella d'oro.' astilbie 'fanal,' and assorted hostas, pulmonaria, heuchera, and lily of the valley in the foreground. I haven't had very good luck with ferns. They tend to be ephemeral in my garden. They come up late and languish in the heat of summer. I'm in zone 6.
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On Fri, 27 Feb 2004 10:06:02 -0600, Michael Moss wrote:

I left lupine off my list. They grow quite well in the upper midwest. Last summer, I had blossoms reaching 1.5 meters.
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Goats Beard will be about 3 feet high. Nice blooms and interesting foliage. Columbine and astilbe would work, too.
For perennials, I might try coleus - nice color. Likewise, caladiums.
I love hosta, and so many beautiful varieties are available, they are always a good choice.

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