PRAIRIEFORM

Everyday excursions in the urban landscape

The other fall foliage

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It’s relatively obvious from our posts that we are sizable fans of ornamental grasses. Part of it is for the muscle they can add to an otherwise too-perennial-heavy landscape, and part of it is for the year-round interest they can provide. Save the short month they disappear when when cut back to the ground in spring, they are pretty much a constant presence in the landscape, including in fall and winter. This is all too important when that flush of summer color fades and the landscape begins to go to sleep; other, muted colors, forms, and shapes need to take the place of green and carry the lansdcape into spring. Our reliable faves include Calamagrostis x acutiflora ‘Karl Foerster’ / Karl Foerster feather reed grass, Koeleria macrantha / June Grass, and Schizachyrium scoparium ‘blaze’ / Blaze little bluestem. Be sure and mix cool- and warm-season grasses into your landscape so that you get that early flush of green from the cool ones while the warm ones still sleep.

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