Hail the Plant of the month!
Every autumn in Calgary, ornamental grasses appear in all its glory. The first bloom among tall grasses is the Feather Reed Grass, scientific name Calamagrostis acutiflora by ‘Karl Foerster’. This magnificent ornamental grass is the first to receive the Perennial Plant of the Year Award™ (2001), due to its handsome appearance, long-lasting plumes and easy growing requirements. Feather Reed Grass of Karl Foerster has also been recently awarded the title as Plant of the Month.
Know more about Feather Reed Grass
As vertical masterpiece, this majestic reed grass provides wonderful contrast among low shrubs and perennials. An early bloomer, ‘Karl Foerster’ is one of the earliest grasses to sprout in spring. It is surely a definite asset in areas whose growing season is short. It accommodates wide range conditions starting zones 3 up to 9 and is happiest under a full sun, in moist to wet fertile soil. Foliage is green; medium blade width; 90-120 cm (36-48″) tall. Plants would not self-seed as it is sterile. The slightest breeze sways the tree gracefully adding beauty to the neat row of Karl in the landscape of Calgary on a windy day!
Flowers for my lady from Feather Reed
Flowers bloom in June throughout July; they are usually150-200 cm (60-80″) tall; and often stands erect even with heavy snowfall. Through the season, color of blossoms changes but stays on the plant until brought down by winter snow. It starts blooming around June or July, but its rich golden color is reached in September. Select flowers from different development periods and assemble a colorful and interesting combination. Place in a vase, rose stems combined with rosehips and display outside your front door. Florists prefer flowers from ‘Karl Foerster’ as it is an excellent cut flower providing vertical structure to bloom displays just like its looks in the garden.
Landscaping with Karl Foerster
Karl Foerster’ ornamental grass goes a long way in landscaping. Although they thrive well on irrigation, regular rain or moist soil but the plant also tolerates clay heavy soils and drier sites. They are usually free of serious disease or insect problems although in particular wet summers and in situations with poor air foliar rust disease may appear. The plant needs little maintenance except to cut back the stems to about 6 inches during late winter or early spring. In milder winter areas, the foliage and shrubs may remain evergreen. This tall and upright grass is ‘Karl Foerster’ a good choice for the back of the border or against a fence
Why plant reed grass?
Reed grass is so easy to maintain. Just dig a hole in the ground around February prior to new growth and give it a light feeding in the spring. When clumps are big, you divide using a shovel in the early spring. You can plant feather reed in spring or fall to take advantage of fall and winter rains. Karl Foerster plant is planted anywhere as it is versatile in any landscape.
Have you ever expected that a grass wins the title as Perennial Plant of the Year? But ‘Karl Foerster’ in 2001 got the honor!