Favourite Ornamental Grasses

Grasses including bamboos can introduce different shades, shapes and textures to your planting scheme. Grasses produce long narrow leaves that contrast well with other plants or shrubs so they are worth growing in mixed and prairie planting schemes. Many grasses have luxurious seed heads and are worth growing for that feature alone.

Top 5 Favourite Grasses.

  • The Photo is of Halonechloa macra Albo-aurea. It forms a small neat clump about 10 inches high and has yellow and cream stripes to the leaves.
  • Blue fescue or Festuca glauca is a neat blue-grey grass that combines well in mixed plantings. It can be used in a grey or silver garden and associates well with Roses.
  • Miscanthus are 5-8 feet tall grasses for the back of borders. Silver feather has white flowers and Zebrinus has transverse yellow bands.
  • Pampas grass or Cortaderia isn’t my favourite but my wife loves them. The large plumes of flowers and seeds can make a splendid specimen plant.
  • Gardeners gaters or Phalaris arundinacea is a rampant variegated grass that spreads by rhisome roots. The flowers can reach 3 foot and look good with purple leaved shrubs.

Estuary grass

Bamboos are evergreen and have a wooden stems or canes. The canes can be used for supporting other plants and it saves buying them. Three varieties to try include Phyllostachys nigra Boryana a cultivar of the black bamboo with dark green canes that turn yellow and purple. Sasa veitchii is a dwarf upto 4 feet tall which forms dense thickets of purple canes with long broad leaves.  The 12 feet high Thamnocalamus spathaceus is a rampant specimen that can be grown in the centre of a lawn as a distinctive feature.

Fountain Grass


  1. A Gardening Carnival-November 26, 2008 | her gardening blog - December 9, 2008

    […] presents What Ornamental Grasses to Grow posted at The Compost Heap, saying, “Top grasses and […]

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