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Gardening Help Search. Graceful and fluid, ornamental grasses not only offer year-round appeal, they add a sense of movement and soothing sound to a landscape as well. Beautiful in the spring, summer, and fall, many believe they are at their best when providing seasonal interest and beauty in the winter garden. Ornamental grasses are available in a variety of shapes and sizes, and they are suitable for specimen plants or can also be used as screens and hedges. Below is a list of Missouri Botanical Garden staff favorites for a St. Louis landscape.
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Search Results for: Ornamental grasses Search the catalog for: Ornamental grasses. I am looking for a native, drought-tolerant grass for a small garden plot in Seattle. Can you suggest a grass that is feet tall and at most 2 feet wide. Festuca idahoensis , Idaho fescue Bromus carinatus and Bromus marginatus , brome grasses Elymus glaucus , wild rye grass Melica species, onion grasses Calamagrostis nutkaensis , Pacific reedgrass.
Each of these grasses grow in very distinct shapes--I recommend that you look at them before choosing which species to plant. Fescues are popular grasses for gardens because of their fine blades and pretty seed heads. Additionally, the Elymus and Bromus will grow much more quickly than the other species. You can perform searches on each of these species at the USDA Plants Database by typing the plant name into the Plants Name search box--this database will give you additional information about the species and some pictures.
The Washington Native Plant Society website has a list of native plant vendors. Date Link to this record only permalink. Keywords: Land treatment of wastewater , Ornamental grasses , Landscaping drain fields , Ground cover plants , Drought-tolerant plants. I am looking for plants suitable for a septic drain field site. I have a very large north facing slope in open sun with a drain field running along the top half. I would like to plant low to no maintenance ground covers and low growing shrubs to cover this area.
This is a focal point when driving up to my house so I want it to be eye catching and interesting year round. I thought of heaths and heathers as a possibility, but I'm not sure if the root system is shallow enough.
I also would like to include native ground covers such as ferns, Gaultheria shallon and any others that you might think would work, as well as ornamental grasses and perennial flowers for interest.
Can you please offer a resource for planting over drain fields or a list of plants that you think would work? Trees or large shrubs should be kept at least 30 feet away from your drain field. If you do plan to plant trees near a drain field, consult an expert to discuss your ideas and needs. Trees and shrubs generally have extensive root systems that seek out and grow into wet areas like drain fields.
Grass is the ideal cover for drain fields. Grasses can be ornamental, mowed in a traditional lawn, or left as an unmowed meadow. You can also try groundcovers and ferns. The key to planting over the drain field is to select shallow-rooted, low-maintenance, low-water-use plants. When tank covers are buried, keep in mind that plantings over the tank--from inlet to outlet--will have to be removed every three or four years for inspection and pumping. Planting your drain field will be much different from other experiences you may have had landscaping.
First, it is unwise to work the soil, which means no rototilling. Parts of the system may be only six inches under the surface. Adding 2 to 3 inches of topsoil should be fine, but more could be a problem. Second, the plants need to be relatively low-maintenance and low-water use. You will be best off if you select plants for your drain field that, once established, will not require routine watering.
Thurston County, Washington, has some information about landscaping a drain field, including plant suggestions, here. McNeilan offers a number of groundcover lists for various situations, including groundcovers for dry sites, slopes, and sun and shade.
The Miller Library has this book. We have a new house that we have to landscape around. The biggest problem is that we have to be careful what we plan due to the septic system. It is an evaporation system, with two huge cement tanks buried under the ground in the front of the house and plastic pipes running through the side yard. We are planting grass in a rectangle right above the biggest bunch of the plastic pipes, but what can go around it or by the cement tanks that will not grow long roots and dig into it?
In looking at the planting information on the packages and in my Western Garden Book, nothing seems to mention root depth. This column deals with some of the basics. A new brochure from Washington Sea Grant called: Landscaping your Septic System, offers considerable detail on the subject and provided much of this material.
Keep all construction away from these areas. Understanding the functioning of the system is vital. Get information. Some of it is available in video form.
The drainfield will not work well if overloaded with extra surface water, so be certain that it is not in the path of downspout run off or irrigation systems. Avoid surrounding it with tall trees. Some shade is fine, but you would not plant an oak on the edge of a drainfield. Set up some barriers so that it is not compacted by frequent foot traffic.
Occasional mowing or moving through the field to check the system is certainly fine, but you do not want the drainfield in the middle of a heavily used path. Plants do help provide oxygen exchange and contribute to evaporation necessary in the drainfield area. Choose plants with shallow, non-invasive roots. You do not want breakage or damage in pipes from root intrusions.
Lawn can be attractive. Do not overload the system by watering it a lot. Meadow grasses or a mixture of turf grasses like perennial rye and some broadleaf flowers such as yarrow can also look good and require little maintenance. Several mixes sold as Eco-Turf or Fleur de Lawn have these components.
Very tall grasses like Stipa gigantea are not appropriate. Avoid over-active plants like English ivy Hedera helix , which is becoming a menace in forested areas by moving in and stifling trees. Vegetable gardening requires frequent cultivation, and digging in the drainfield area is inadvisable. Also, the brochure notes that: Sewage effluent is distributed through the soil in the drainfield area.
Any root vegetables planted in this area may be directly exposed to septic tank effluent. Some, such as bugle weed Ajuga reptans and vinca Vinca minor grow vigorously and would fill in quickly.
The native kinnikinnick Arctostaphylos uva-ursi grows well in full sun but is slow to establish. A mulch around the plants may help with weed control while the plants spread. Keep landscaping simple and straightforward, remembering that the object is the good performance of the system.
To get more information on septic systems, contact your local health department. Keywords: Transplanting , Schizachyrium , Plant care , Ornamental grasses. Schizachyrium scoparium seems to me to be difficult to transplant. They die on me when moved. What could I be doing wrong?
The time of year? Adequately watered? According to the Color Encyclopedia of Ornamental Grasses , Schizachyrium scoparium requires full sun, prefers good drainage or sloping ground, does not persist on highly fertile soils or in excessively moist conditions, and suffers if the crowns are crowded by mulch.
Propagate by seed or by division in spring. Grasses are sensitive to soil level, especially when young. Ideally, the crown of the grass should sit just slightly above the soil surface. Planting too low can rot grasses and planting to high can cause them to dry out and die. Mulch of all sorts can be an efficient method of controlling weeds and conserving soil moisture.
Many species, such as Schizachyrium scoparium , cannot tolerate having mulch pushed up around their crowns, a practice that often promotes rot and disease at the base of the plant. Darke, , pp. Keywords: Festuca rubra , Poa macrantha , Lathyrus littoralis , Glehnia leiocarpa , Carex macrocephala , Convolvulus soldanella , Abronia latifolia , Elymus mollis , Native plants--Washington , Ornamental grasses.
I live in a community on Camano Island. We have some communal beach front property and would like to plant some native beach grasses that are about one foot high. What species do we have to choose from and where can we purchase them? I found a list of native Northwest beach grasses in an online symposium moderated by Alfred Wiedemann of Evergreen State College in Olympia. The symposium was about an invasive species, Ammophila arenaria , or European beach grass, which has been crowding out native species.
Here are some of the plants he mentioned: Elymus Leymus mollis Dunegrass Abronia latifolia Convolvulus Calystegia soldanella Carex macrocephala Glehnia leiocarpa Lathyrus littoralis Poa macrantha.
Here is a Seattle Times article from May 1, about beach plants by Valerie Easton that may be of interest to you. These two grasses were specifically recommended for beachside gardens: Elymus or Leymus mollis also listed above Festuca rubra Red fescue.
Washington Native Plant Society might also be a good resource for you. They provide a list of nurseries in our area which specialize in native plants. King County's Native Plant Guide also has a list of sources.
Keywords: Ornamental grasses , Miscanthus , Invasive plants. I am looking for an ornamental grass that doesn't get over 5 feet tall and am wondering what are the growing conditions for Miscanthus sinensis Gracillimus? How much sun does it need, will it spread and invade my other plants, is it invasive in our area Seattle?
I found several cultivars of Miscanthus listed on the local web site Great Plant Picks. Miscanthus sinensis 'Morning Light' will reach about 5 feet tall by 4 feet wide.
Does your landscaping look stark and boring in the winter? Many people cut back their clumps of ornamental native grasses as soon as they go dormant in the fall, or in early winter. Instead of cutting back your native grasses this winter, try leaving them instead and observe what happens. Read on to learn the benefits of leaving those clumps for the winter! Usually, they throw the clippings onto a bonfire or put them into the municipal leaf pickup along with every last one of the leaves that falls in their yard. Those dormant clumps of ornamental grass are a great hiding place for songbirds and small animals.
Ornamental grasses are sometimes overlooked as plants that can add interest to the landscape. The foliage and flower plumes of ornamental.
Ornamental grasses create interest and excitement in the landscape with their unique characteristics. The availability of many species and cultivars makes these plants very versatile, with many potential uses in the landscape. The diversity of grasses leads to many questions concerning the proper selection and use of ornamental grasses. The following information should assist the first-time gardener as well as the experienced landscaper in the selection and use of ornamental grasses in Florida. The term "ornamental grass" is a catch-all phrase used to describe not only true grasses but related "grass-like" plants as well. True grasses are in the plant family Poaceae, while grass-like plants generally fall into one of four families: the rushes Juncaceae , the sedges Cyperaceae , narrow-leaved sweetflag species Acoraceae and the horsetails Equisetaceae. All of these plant families contain plants adapted to a wide variety of environments and planting conditions. Within each of these plant families are individual species adapted to a wide variety of landscape sites i.
Ornamental grasses are becoming more popular as garden and landscaping plants, offering interesting textures not often found in other ornamental plants. Most of Iowa is well suited for growing grasses, having been originally covered with an inland sea of grasses, the waves formed by the wind. Many of our native prairie grasses and woodland grasses are beautiful and can be used in the garden. Only a few native species are currently in use.
Australian House and Garden.
Pre-Order for Spring of - Learn More. Enjoy this striped dwarf perennial grass in your full sun garden and create a spectacular small hedge or landscape border, or highlight it as a specimen plant in your smaller landscape. Smaller than traditional M. Bright green leaves have creamy yellow interruptions along the arching grass stems, and then you get flowers! Silvery white plumes of flower heads reach for the sky and sway in the wind, creating movement and texture in your landscape.
The most popular ornamental grass, feather reed grass offers a distinct upright habit that looks fantastic all winter long. Like many grasses, this tough plant tolerates a wide range of conditions. A beautiful, mounding plant, fountain grass offers a graceful shape, plus soft, feathery plumes that dance in the breeze. A lovely, tough-as-nails prairie native , little bluestem offers gray-green leaf blades that turn bold shades of purple, red, and orange in autumn. A North American prairie native, switch grass offers airy plumes in late summer and fall. It looks great during the season, too: Many varieties such as 'Dallas Blues' offer blue-gray foliage during the season and turn brilliant shades of gold or red in autumn. It's tough to beat blue oat grass for a low-care plant with steel-blue color. It also has a tidy mounded habit and won't spread and take over your garden.
Late winter / early spring are the perfect time to cut back ornamental grasses. You can get a head start on landscaping chores, and create.
September is the time of year when ornamental grasses truly makes an impact in the landscape. Many have showy plumes of airy seedheads that move gracefully in the breeze and offer winter interest even after they age to their seasonal hues of tan and brown. We carry many types of ornamental grasses.
Monday, October 10, Perennials. But once I started designing gardens, I better understood grasses and what they bring to the garden. Here are my five favorite reasons to go with grasses in your yard. Ornamental Grasses Add Texture I can appreciate the look of ornamental grasses in the prairie, but I love the way they act as punctuation marks in the garden and landscape. Their texture creates a delightful contrast against most annuals and perennials. Switch grass Panicum , for example, adds a fluffy, frothy look to coneflowers, black-eyed Susans, and heleniums.
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Track your order through my orders. With such a diverse group of plants there is something to fit every space and style. Tall, architectural grasses make fabulous screens while shorter species soften the edges of borders and containers. Colourful foliage and textural flower heads bring plenty of interest to the garden, and evergreen grasses can even be used to create year round structure. Most grasses associate beautifully with each other, blending gracefully into perennial borders and creating a rich tapestry. Read on to discover how you can use grasses in your garden and which ones to choose for the best effect. Why not browse our extensive range of ornamental grasses, and buy yours online today.
Blue oat grass Helictotrichon sempervirens adds spiky drama to planting areas with its porcupine-like clumps of steely-blue foliage. The best blue tones develop in plants growing in dry soils in full sun. Flower plumes appear in early summer, opening in blue-brown shades and shifting to wheat color by fall.