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Hakonechloa or Sedge for under a River Birch?

Posted by beetelman z6 pa (My Page) on
Mon, Jan 13, 14 at 11:33

I would like to underplant a grove of 3 River Birch trees with a shade/part sun loving ornamental grass that does not get too tall, and I have narrowed the choice to one of the Hakonechloa "All Gold" or "Aureola" and a Carex/Sedge grass like Carex oshimensis 'Everillo' or Carex 'Silver Scepter'. I don't have any experience with either of these perennial grasses, but I have read decent reviews for both.

The ground under the river birches is normal (not too dry or wet), and there is some afternoon sun that will hit the grasses through the limbs of the birches. Any suggestions? Thanks for your help.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Hakonechloa or Sedge for under a River Birch?

The carex will be evergreen, the hakone not. Either than that, both will work equally as well. Personally, I like color variations of the 'Aureola' and think it would enhance the bark coloring of the birches very nicely. Don't care much for the 'All Gold.

RE: Hakonechloa or Sedge for under a River Birch?

I'm CRAZY for All Gold!

RE: Hakonechloa or Sedge for under a River Birch?

One thing to check out is speed of spread for the three plants. I don't grow either of the Carex you are interested in, but some Carex clumps or spreads slowly and some spreads fairly quickly. In my garden, Hakonechloa 'All Gold' makes a very slowly expanding clump so that it took probably 5 years to get from a one gallon pot to a two foot diameter clump. I like the bright gold to chartreuse range of colors it develops depending on the amount of sun it gets, and in my garden it is easy care.

RE: Hakonechloa or Sedge for under a River Birch?

In my experience, birches have shallow root systems that I think would leave Hakonechloas very unhappy. I'd go for Geranium macrorhizom(sp?)--THE plant for dry shade. It's semi evergreen in my zone.

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