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New Plant
New/Featured for 2019

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Full Sun

Partial Shade
Partial Shade

Shade Lover
Full Shade

Drought Tolerant
Drought Tolerant

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Picture Available

Drawing Available
Drawing Available

(PPAF) = Propagation of this plant prohibited without a license.

Hardiness Zone Map


Calamagrostis

Extremely durable, undemanding and hearty, this all-purpose clump-forming grass delivers arresting accents to any garden setting.

<i>Calamagrostis</i> x <i>acutiflora</i> ‘Avalanche’

This distinctive newcomer is a variegated form of Calamagrostis ‘Karl Foerster’ first spotted by Steve Schmidt at American Ornamental Perennials. Showcasing dramatically striped foliage, the medium-sized clumps spring to life as a hefty white central band bordered by narrow green margins embellishes each blade. Topped with an airy aura of rose-tinged green plumes that later take on warm, golden hues, ‘Avalanche’s straight-up stance forges a compelling specimen, or when planted en masse, a boldly patterned screen. (PPAF)

Blooms May–January

Size: 5' 0" high x 3' 0" wide.

Zone 4/5.

Chanced upon at Garden Gate Growers in Kettle Falls, Washington, this flashy variegated form of ‘Karl Foerster’ wields slender deep green blades heightened by a central golden stripe. The long, narrow vertical plumes are somewhat more open compared to ‘Karl Foerster’s, exhibiting a gossamer-like quality that unfurls in muted mauve tones and ends the season with warm wheat shades atop staunch honey-colored stalks. Triumphant over deer, heavy clay and hot weather, ‘Eldorado’ enjoys sunny, moderately moist environs, while its robust eye-catching profile can be utilized as a straight-standing specimen or planted en masse. (pp#16,486)

Blooms May–December

Size: 5' 0" high x 2' 0" – 2-1/2' wide.

Hardy to zone 4.

<i>Calamagrostis</i> x <i>acutiflora</i> ‘Karl Foerster’ <i>Calamagrostis</i> x <i>acutiflora</i> ‘Karl Foerster’

Named for pioneering German nurseryman Karl Foerster, this selection bears loose and airy 12 in. seed heads, which tighten to slender plumes by midsummer. Rising above 2 ft. clumps of narrow green foliage, the inflorescences create an ideal semitransparent veiling effect. Plant with deep green Viburnums to accentuate its golden flowering stems.

Blooms May–January

Size: 5' 0" high x 3' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 5.

This exceptional new Asian denizen is a vigorous, upright clumping grass. Bleached to a luminous white when mature, sizable, fluffy mulled pink plumes sway above dapper, glossy green blades that are broader and somewhat more coarsely textured than Calamagrostis ‘Karl Foerster’s foliage. Bestowing late summer blooms and shapely good looks throughout the season, Caspian’s undemanding habit provides butter-yellow fall foliage, craves adequate moisture and tolerates light shade plus a range of sites.

Blooms August–November

Size: 4' 0" high x 2' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 4.

Warmed by rosy maroon plumes, Calamagrostis brachytricha is native to the moist woodlands of eastern Asia. The inflorescences stay open and feathery, even when they dry, and eventually pale to an elegant silvery gray. Magical both in an arrangement or outside when the wind blows, the panicles leap from a clump of glossy green, upright and arching blades. This warm season grass exhibits a smaller stature, making it well suited for a container.

Blooms September

Size: 4' 0" high x 2' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 4.

<i>Calamagrostis</i> x ‘Cheju-do’

The minute white hairs lining arching medium green blades glisten with dew, while narrow, loosely feathered caramel-colored inflorescences loll above. Not as tall as Calamagrostis x ‘Karl Foerster’ and well-suited for gardens short on space, this relatively new soft-looking Calamagrostis develops a versatile low maintenance clump that transmutes warm rosy amber hues in autumn. ‘Cheju-do’ can be featured as an elegant specimen, planted in drifts around large shrubs or small trees and is especially lovely skirting a Japanese Maple.

Blooms August–October

Size: 2' 0" – 3' 0" high x 2' 0" – 3' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 5.

<i>Calamagrostis foliosa</i> <i>Calamagrostis foliosa</i>

Garnished by violet tinges, low loose mounds of glaucous blue-gray blades generally remain throughout the year and set this cool season California native apart from other North American Calamagrostis species. Slender tapering pinkish purple panicles sojourn just above the relaxed foliage in a lovely fountain-like fashion and by early summer adopt luminous flaxen hues.

Cape Mendocino Reed Grass pouts when it’s hot, appreciates summer irrigation and looks artful either as a large-scale ground cover or peppered throughout mixed borders and naturalized meadows.

Blooms May–November

Size: 18" high x 2' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 8.

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Current Staff's Favorite Plant

Current Staff's Favorite Plant

Our featured plant: Crocosmia x crocosmiiflora ‘Honey Angels’

Colorful Crocosmias, Be Awed by your August garden, Saturday Strolls!

Click here to view our Late August 2019 Newsletter!

Colorful Crocosmias!

Crocosmias pack a punch of late summer color as our gardens transition into autumn. Their clustered tubular flowers populate the ends of gracefully arching spikes, which emerge from handsome sword-like foliage. Ranging from yellow, peach and orange to fiery red, their prismatic shades look exceptional with white flowering perennials such as Phlox ‘David’, Selinum wallichianum and Aster ‘Bridal Veil’, as well as the blue blossoms of Aconitum, Agapanthus ‘Storm Cloud’ or Aster ‘Twilight’. For fun you could create a hot border, blending them with Kniphofia, Helenium, Salvia and even other Crocosmia, plus be sure to include some in your next bouquet. Commonly referred to as Montbretia and hardy to Zone 6, they appreciate, good drainage, adequate water and some shade in scorching summer sun. Please feel free to check out our extensive collection of Crocosmia cultivars in the perennial section of our online catalog.

YES, it’s possible to be in awe of your late August garden….

At this point in the season, some areas in our gardens may appear a tad worn or lackluster. If you haven’t already done so, you may wish to cut back a few tired looking perennials, such as the Nepetas or Geraniums, so you can enjoy a fresh flourish of growth plus more blooms. Adequate moisture and an additional application of compost will also ensure late summer vigor. Incorporating plants that provide a bounty of flowers and alluring leaves in August and September helps buoy our spirits, and hopefully even inspire a little awe as we approach fall. Though the plants featured in this newsletter either promote a bold statement or possess more refined aspects, they equally caught my eye and made me pause to take a closer look. Perhaps they’ll spark a wondrous moment for you as well. All of us Digging Dog plant wranglers wish you Happy Digging!

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