A green garden is nice and cool in the summer, and it also drains rainwater away quickly after a heavy downpour. But most of all, a green garden makes you feel good. It invites you in when you come home, and, when you do, it’s so easy to unwind among all the plants. Ornamental grasses even give your green garden something extra. While relaxing in your garden, you can also enjoy their plumes dancing in the wind.
Ornamental grasses are long-lived garden plants that require little care. Green living was never so easy! These plants prefer a sunny location; what’s more, you can fit them in among other plants almost anywhere. Go ahead: get creative! A garden doesn’t have to be perfectly manicured: be inspired by nature. Combine the grasses with other flowering perennials for example. This will attract an abundance of butterflies, bees and birds to your garden. It’s like having your very own nature conservation area.
Pruning ornamental grasses
As summer comes to an end, you don’t need to get the pruning shears out. Just let your ornamental grasses do their thing. In the autumn, when many plants are fading, the beautiful autumn colours of these beauties provide a grande finale. In the winter, you can enjoy their spectacular winter silhouette. Actually, you can wait until March/April to trim them back to 5 to 10 cm above the ground. Then, it won’t be long before the first bright green blades of grass make their appearance. The only thing the evergreen grasses need in the spring is to have their withered leaves removed.
Isn’t it fun to pick flowers from your own garden in the summer? Adding a few clumps of ornamental grass makes it even more fun. The best time to pick your flowers and grasses is in the morning. That’s when they’re still fresh and perky. Arrange your garden bouquet with the grass plumes poking up above the flowers. What could say summer better? Pretty ornamental grasses for cutting include Reed Grass (Calamagrostis), Panicgrass (Panicum), Fountaingrass (Pennisetum), Silvergrass (Miscanthus) and Moor Grass (Molinia). Add ornamental grasses to other flowering perennial garden plants and get even more enjoyment from your cutting garden.
- Is grass always green? Not always: take certain ornamental grasses for example. There are blue ones like Blue Fescue (Festuca glauca) and bright red ones like Japanese Bloodgrass (a cultivar of Imperata cylindrica).
- If you have a large garden, you can really go to town with the larger grasses like Miscanthus sinensis or Stipa gigantea. These make real eye-catchers.
- Low-growing ornamental grasses such as Hakonechloa macra can be used as a groundcover: lots of green but little maintenance.
- Some ornamental grasses such as the sedges (Carex) and fescues (Festuca) are even evergreen. These garden plants retain their colour throughout the winter so you can enjoy their beauty all year round.
Do you want to read more about ornamental grasses? Take a look at our post ‘mother nature’s hair’.