What Are Some Facts on Feather Reed Grass?


Quick Answer

Feather reed grass, or Calamagrostis x acutiflor, is a low maintenance perennial that is hardy in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 4 through 9, which have average minimum temperatures as low as minus 30 degrees Fahrenheit. This cool season ornamental grass blooms in early summer with small flowers that fade to tan by autumn. Plants are typically 3 to 8 feet tall and 1 to 2 feet wide.

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Full Answer

Unlike other ornamental grasses, feather reed grass typically grows upright instead of arching outward. It grows well in areas of full sun to partial shade, but it tends to become floppy when it is grown in overly shady areas. It grows well in nutrient-rich well-drained soil, although it can tolerate dampness, which makes it an ideal choice for boggy soil near water gardens or pools. Prune feather reed grass so that it is about 6 inches above ground level in fall or early spring before it begins forming new growth.

Feather reed grass is deer resistant and drought tolerant once the plant is established. Varieties of feather reed grass include "Karl Foerster," which has red flowers; "Overdam," which has white flowers and white variegated leaves; and "Avalanche," which has golden flowers and yellow variegated leaves.

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