There is a big variety of different grasses, in many different sizes, shades and leaf shapes. If you choose the grasses you like and which fit your garden, it can be designed with a special flair. Grasses can be the last polish for a harmonic general view and let the garden shine in a special way. But do you know which grasses fit well in your garden and also offer a special eye-catcher in winter? What are the differences between the various grasses? And what should you consider for planting? Let us get to the bottom of these questions.
You can find grasses all over the world, no matter how hot or cold, clammy or dry it is. Hence there are suitable places in almost every garden. Hardy and perennial sorts are suited best because they withstand the changing weather.
The most important step is to determine the style which should apply to your garden, and correspondingly which grasses fit to this garden style. In general, grasses can serve as blinds, blocking unwanted views, as ground-cover plants, or as a bond between different plant groups. You can also plant grasses to fill in the gaps in autumn and winter beds. As many grasses change their colours in autumn – which can stretch from silvery grey to warm copper tones - they also offer an eye-catcher during that time of year. In the winter garden, you can see wonderful pictures of dry grasses that are covered by hoar frost and snow.
The best time for planting grasses is in autumn or spring. In order to ensure optimal conditions you should use a mixture of potting compost and leaves for shrub-like grasses, and a mixture of potting compost and sand for steppe grass. After planting, the roots have to be completely covered by soil. A distance of 30-150 centimetres is advisable between the singles grass plants as they spread a lot. Ideally, the soil should be able to store moisture but at the same time be permeable to water. For green grasses, the rule applies: “the brighter the grass, the more moist and shady the planting spot should be”. Which means that grasses with grey or blueish sand-sedges should be placed at dry and sunny places, whereas beamless and coloured grasses need to find a place in half shaded and clammy potting compost. The spikes of annual grasses should be removed after the blossom. However try to keep the ears of the shrub-grasses as the dry blossoms look really beautiful in winter. Before spring, the grass usually is cut back down to the ground. If you want to avoid further growth, the grasses need to be separated.
To make the look & feel of your garden perfect, you can use the variety of the grasses in an eye-catching way. As the growth height of different grass types varies a lot, it is best to follow the rule: “High grasses are better placed in the back and lower growing grasses in the front of beds.” Of course you can also use high grasses to beautify free spots in the garden.
Grasses for your garden
Giant Chinese silver grass: It can reach a height of up to 4 meters. Characteristic for the reed is its rapid growth and its thin green haulm. It is hardy and also looks particularly beautiful during all seasons.
Pampas grass: This grass is an optical attention getter. The white Pampas grass can grow up to 90-250 centimeters and has really conspicuous blossoms that flourish in late summer. The shrub needs normal and permeable ground with full sun.
Japan Segge: Also a conspicuous and a coloured grass that suits as a ground cover plant because it is rather low-growing with a maximum height of 40 centimeters. The plant is hardy and does not need a lot of care.
Penniseturn: This grass is a really persistent plant that has pseudo spikes. It is especially fitted for beautifying and enhancing the bed. Some species are not hardy.
Bearskin fescue: This grass has its name from its look. The needle-like leaves are so close to each other that they look like the fur of a bear.