New Grasses? What's HOT????

achnatherum(z4or3 Ontario)April 3, 2012

Ok, here's the thing - I have been busy building new gardens at the new house AND since I already have more grass cultivars than any sane person would need :o).... I am about 3 years out of touch with what is the newest & most popular in the OG world. I'm giving a OG talk in two weeks & I would like to mention whether or not OG popularity is growing or waning. This, I think, would be demonstrated by how many new grasses have become available.

Please help me out!

A.

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donn_(7b-8a)

Say Hey, A! Good to see you back on the forum.

I haven't been following it as closely as I used to either, but it seems there are always newbies in Miscanthus, Hakonechloa and Calamagrostis. I like the fairly new variegated Chasmanthium; 'River Mist.' There are at least a dozen new Carex varieties each year, but many of them just don't vary much from earlier cultivars.

As to popularity...Going only on what I see in my neighborhood, and from clients who are buying from me, it's still increasing. I'm glad, too, because it gives me more ground to use for growing them. I install plants for folks, and replace them as they get too big. Then the larger models go to larger gardens. I'm taking care of some plants I've sold 4 times.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 7:07PM
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achnatherum(z4or3 Ontario)

Donn,
Thanks for the response :o)
Love your idea for 'recycling grasses. What a hoot!

I am really pleased by the variety of grasses that I can grow up here. Even Arundo donax is having absolutely no trouble - my plant reached a good 8 feet last year. I haven't tried any of the variegated 'evergreen' carexs - I suspect that they wouldn't be happy...... Miscanthus are fine although I have to stick to the early bloomers to get reliable blooming. Other grasses do even better in this cooler climate. Calamagrostis, Molinias, Deschampsias, Panicums & Little bluestem, all LOVE life in the 'near north'

With regards to new cultivars. I managed to pick up a couple of new plants. Hakonechloa macra 'Sunny Delight' and Calamagrostis 'Eldorado' So .... I am getting back in the loop :o)

    Bookmark   April 13, 2012 at 9:23AM
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donn_(7b-8a)

I love 'Eldorado.' I have a grouping of five of them. They arrived as tiny plugs, and are going into their 3rd year in the ground, so I expect great things of them this year.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2012 at 3:59PM
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scottyboipdx(8)

The one "new" grass I'm super-excited about this year is Schizachyrium 'Blue Heaven'. From what I've heard, it gets a bit taller than normal Little Bluestem (around 4') and has AMAZING fall color. The nursery I get most of my grasses gets their shipment in June...so excited!

The other new grass, which I put in last year, was Panicum 'Blood Brothers', which has the MOST amazing coloring...I posted a bit about it on my blog (link below). I'm really looking forward to seeing how its first full year in my garden goes :-)

Here is a link that might be useful: My Blog

    Bookmark   April 18, 2012 at 10:48AM
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donn_(7b-8a)

Scott..you'll be interested to know Acnatherum, the member who started this thread, introduced 'Blood Brothers' to the world. I haven't been able to find it yet.

I bought a flat of 15 'Blue Heaven' quarts from Kurt Bluemel last Spring. I potted them up to trade gallons, and they did great. Now I'm waiting to see how they come back this year, before I install them. They've just started to put on some new foliage, and it looks like the crowns are expanding nicely. It's a great grass. I look forward to getting them into the display beds.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2012 at 1:26PM
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grassboro

I planted three Blue Heaven last summer I got from Santa Rosa Gardens. The have all come back and about a foot tall now.

I also planted a Panicum virgatum 'Cheyenne Sky' last summer I found locally and it was beautiful. It is also about a foot tall now. It will be interesting to see another years growth on these. I am trying to find another one of these.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2012 at 7:38PM
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scottyboipdx(8)

hahahaha...OMG, you're totally right, donn! I didn't even look at the name of the op! I think I actually e-mailed him last year when I bought them to tell him how beautiful I thought they were! Grassboro, can't believe your Panicum as so big already, most of mine aren't even showing a sign of life yet...then again, we've had a really cool, rainy spring. I'm trying another Panicum this year as well, 'Huron Solstice', I think it's called...we'll see how it compares to 'Shenandoah' and 'Blood Brothers'.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2012 at 11:21AM
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buyorsell888(Zone 8 Portland OR)

Scott, I enjoyed reading your blog. You've inspired me to get some taller grasses, I've concentrated on little ones for years having a little yard. 'Karley Rose' got huge and flopped for me in partial shade. I'm hoping 'Pennstripe' will do better in that site. I haven't tried many of the grasses you grow here in Portland.

I don't love red flowers but I do love red foliage so I'll keep my eyes open for that gorgeous grass.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2012 at 12:21PM
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scottyboipdx(8)

Tha'ts great, buyorsell! 'Karley Rose' flops for me in partial shade as well...some just need full sun to be upright. I've had good luck with Calamagrostis staying upright, even in quite a bit of shade. Panicums can also stay pretty upright, especially the shorter varieties, like 'Shenanodah', although the color won't be as intense as it would be in full sun.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2012 at 1:23PM
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buyorsell888(Zone 8 Portland OR)

full sun is more of a suggestion than reality in my yard...I haven't tried any Panicums nor Calamagrostis. I have multiple Miscanthus, Pennisetums, Carex, Fescues and Hakonechloas

    Bookmark   April 30, 2012 at 5:59PM
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achnatherum(z4or3 Ontario)

I have enjoyed reading this thread! My grass talk went really well - it was rather nice to get back to talking about grasses after taking four years off. Right now I am trying to get my head around using grasses in my more northern garden with a forest for a backdrop. Well, 'get my head around' isn't the only problem - I also have to 'build' the gardens!

Scotty, the grass pictures on your blog are Fabulous! I really enjoyed reading that section! I am delighted that some of you have & are liking Panicum Blood Brothers.

This is my next NEW favorite - A direct descendent of Blood Brothers. Sorry ... won't be on the market for another year or two :o( What do you think???

A.

    Bookmark   May 15, 2012 at 6:09AM
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buyorsell888(Zone 8 Portland OR)

ooh blue and red together, like it!

    Bookmark   May 21, 2012 at 6:30PM
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scottyboipdx(8)

Love it...then again, I'm a sucker for Panicums :-)

    Bookmark   May 24, 2012 at 12:29PM
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glaswegian(5b, Ont)

Hello all...No one has mentioned zebra grass yet...they love full sun or partial shade even here in Ontario Canada. They get real tall too.

    Bookmark   May 28, 2012 at 7:48PM
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mary-in-toronto

I planted Panicum "Northwind". I love it. Very upright and vertical.

    Bookmark   July 5, 2012 at 10:44AM
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buyorsell888(Zone 8 Portland OR)

I have three of the smaller "zebra" Miscanthus cultivars.
'Little Zebra', 'Puenktchen' and 'Stardust' no room for the big ones.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2012 at 11:20AM
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