Feather grass

FAMILY: Poaceae | GENUS: STIPA

TYPE
  • Perennials
  • Ornamental Grasses
SUN EXPOSURE
  • Full Sun
WATER
  • Varies by Species
PLANTING ZONES
  • US (Upper South) / Zone 6
  • MS (Middle South) / Zone 7
  • LS (Lower South) / Zone 8
  • CS (Coastal South) / Zone 9

Plant Details

These clump-forming grasses produce large, open, airy inflorescences that can add lightness and motion to the garden. The genus has undergone much revision by botanists, and some of its former members are now known by other names; for one example, see Nassella tenuissima, the highly ornamental Mexican feather grass. Deer don't seem to care for these grasses.

giant feather grass

stipa gigantea

  • From Spain, Portugal, Morocco.
  • Narrow, arching, evergreen leaves in a clump to 23 feet tall and slightly wider.
  • Open, airy sheaves of yellowish flowers bloom in summer, forming a broad, shimmering cloud that rises 6 feet tall and as wide or slightly wider.
  • Little to moderate water.

pillar of smoke

stipa ramosissima (Austrostipa ramosissima)

  • From Australia.
  • To 67 feet tall, 3 feet wide.
  • The erect column of evergreen foliage and blossoms does somewhat resemble a pillar of smoke.
  • Flowering is almost continuous; the airy, light tan inflorescences make up half (or a little more) of the plant's total height.
  • Regular water.

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