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New/Featured for 2019

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Full Sun

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Partial Shade

Shade Lover
Full Shade

Drought Tolerant
Drought Tolerant

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Picture Available

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Drawing Available

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

Hardiness Zone Map


Molinia

Moor Grass

Innovative landscape architect Wolfgang Oehme, who included more than a million ornamental grasses in his designs, considered Molinias to be some of the very best performers of them all. Certainly the most kinetically exciting grass, Molinia’s dense arching tufts of deep green foliage offer sturdy stems holding delicate panicles that eventually age to a straw color and last for months. To heighten the drama, consider providing them with plenty of room and a dark background.

<i>Molinia caerulea</i> ssp. <i>arundinacea</i> ‘Bergfreund’

Invite this “friend of the mountain” into your garden bed and it will quickly become your friend as well. Dynamic yet not too imposing, a gauzy array of gently pendulous, rich-colored reddish purple flowers mingles on upright dark green stems. Handsome foliage forms a low green stage that radiates yellow hues in autumn. Studded with rice-like beads transmuting warm chestnut shades when mature, the airy plumes should be headlined right up front where they become a mysterious veil that you can peer through.

Blooms June–October

Size: 4' 0" – 5' 0" high x 3' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 4.

A boldly architectural grass thought to be one of famed plant breeder Ernest Pagel's last selections, 'Cordoba' stands nearly 7 ft. tall, a monolithic beacon of dramatic proportions. Noble green blades construct the substantial moderately upright leafy mound, releasing gently arching erect stems and sheer purple-hued seed heads. Its enticing shades of yellow herald autumn with sunshine- soaked leaves and butterscotch-colored waning inflorescences. Recently rediscovered and introduced by Intrinsic Perennial Gardens, this vigorous easily cultivated Molinia relishes cool moist conditions, appreciates additional water during hot spells, makes a statuesque stand-alone and steals the show when massed.

Blooms June–November

Size: 6' 0" – 7' 0" high x 3' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 5.

See-through, delicate plumes on upright and arching stems energetically leap skybound from a green, 2-½ ft. tall foliar pedestal. Bearing the name of the legendary German nurseryman Karl Foerster, this Molinia’s gossamerlike inflorescences first emerge suffused in purply raisin shades, and by fall gilded highlights set the lofty blooms aglow, further heightening the butter yellow hues of the stalks and leaves below.

Blooms June – October

Size: 6' 0" – 7' 0" high x 3' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 4.

Donning a stately sculptural presence and a dancer’s grace, especially when roused by summer breezes, this first-class Kurt Bluemel selection grows narrowly upright. The pendulous grayish green ribbons comprise a low, 2 ft. high mounding clump that launches firm stems with plum-colored seed heads and feathery, veil-like panicles. Still compelling in November, both foliage and lofty inflorescences adopt cozy golden yellow and amber fall colors.

Blooms June–November

Size: 7' 0" – 8' 0" high x 3' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 4.

Dark green ribbon-like blades and golden fall color distinguish ‘Staefa’s spiffy 2 to 3 ft. tall mound that debuts a bounty of stiff-stemmed predominately upright airy panicles. Named after a lakeside Swiss city, this stately Molinia can edge a trail, be planted mid-border or viewed from afar, where its captivating fine textured blooms promise a graceful visual feast, either glowing in the afternoon sun, waltzing with the wind or accompanying Sedum ‘Septemberglut’ and Filipendula ‘Venusta Alba’.

Blooms July–October

Size: 4' 0" – 5' 0" high x 3' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 4.

Sporting a distinctive upright profile, the narrow tailored column of divergent thin green blades gives way to erect stems closely laden with greenish purple flower spikelets. Misty looking inflorescences offer beguiling glimpses of what lies behind, while flaxen-colored foliage signals autumn. Heather Bride’s striking vertical aspect can be positioned in the rockery, massed in a natural setting or planted as a counterpoint amid smaller more lax-looking plants.

Blooms June–October

Size: 2-1/2' – 4' 0" high x 2' 0" – 3' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 5.

An exquisite German selection of Moor Grass, this Molinia's wispy, flaxen-hued inflorescences nimbly sway on 2 ft. slender stems above a pleasing, compact clump of arching and slender green blades, which turns an intense orange-red in autumn. Clearly 'Moorflamme' proclaims its colorful intensity.

Blooms June–October

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

Hardy to zone 4.

Likened to poetry in motion when a lazy wind stirs, stiff slender stems rise well above widely arching compact blades, bowing under the weight of fine textured, large hazy purple blooms. Ideal for small-scale gardens, the neat slim green leaves and stalks are shorter than our other Molinia selections, and come fall their lambent golden yellow hues invigorate the landscape. This first-rate dwarf cultivar projects a broad light-footed stance that partners well with the magenta flowers of willowy Dianthus carthusianorum.

Blooms July–November

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

Hardy to zone 5.

The cultivar name translates to “enduring ray” for the long-lasting beauty this fine textured grass bestows upon the garden. Prancing above robust low growing tufts of emerald-green foliage, stiff mostly upright divergent stems showcase elegant panicles with slim dark purple spikelets. ‘Dauerstrahl’ is second-to-none as a container specimen or as a mixed border component, adding late season allure when bright buttery yellow hues transform its blades and flowering stalks.

Blooms June–November

Size: 3' 0" – 4' 0" high x 2' 0" – 2-1/2' wide.

Hardy to zone 4.

Molinia caerulea ‘Moorhexe’ (G-0049)

Each $9.50

AVAILABLE LATE SEPTEMBER 2019

<i>Molinia caerulea</i> ‘Moorhexe’

This easily maintained cool season grass projects formal straight-up accents with its tidy, narrow shaft of taut, slim green blades topped by needle-thin flower stems. Populating open gossamer-like panicles, the spiky dark purple inflorescences yield plum-brown seed heads, a stunning complement to the saffron-hued autumn foliar tones. Second-to-none for seaside or prairie schemes, a border, rockery or gravel garden, ‘Moorhexe’s compelling vertical silhouette effectively offsets lower growing plants like Potentilla atrosanguinea and Aster ‘Dream of Beauty’.

Blooms July–November

Size: 2' 0" – 3' 0" high x 18" – 2' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 4.

Long admired for its low growing, closely knit foliage, unique purple coloration and wispy-topped, wide-splayed flowering stems, this handsome, color-rich Molinia sprung forth as a chance seedling in one of Digging Dog Nursery’s display borders. Midsummer finds the neat, flowing green foundation infused with damson-plum hues, while firm, lean, arching stems turn purple, eventually broadcasting lavish raisin shades and glittering copper-colored seed heads in autumn. An opulent see-through specimen, ‘Purple Infusion’ can be showcased right up-front, accompanied by Clematis ‘Polish Spirit’, Eupatorium ‘Riesenschirm’ and Phlox ‘Nicky’.

Blooms June–October

Size: 3' 0" – 4' 0" high x 3' 0" – 4' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 4.

When sunlight and moisture settle on ‘Transparent’s sheer, soft floral haze, umpteen loosely spaced tiny purple seed heads evoke an exquisite piece of frozen lace. The low, well-groomed mound of ribbon-like green blades gives way to tall, ultrafine arching stalks plus aptly named, unbranched inflorescences that linger high above the leaves. Swayed by the slightest breeze, this easily grown Molinia’s flowers furnish a sophisticated purple-tinged transparency near summer’s end, while golden tones imbue the entire plant when cooler nights arrive. It can be massed in a naturalized setting or reside midborder with Vernonia ‘Iron Butterfly’, Aster turbinellus and Achillea ‘Marmalade’ nearby.

Blooms July–November

Size: 5' 0" – 8' 0" high x 4' 0" – 3' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 5.

<i>Molinia litoralis</i> ‘Windspiel’

The cultivar name is German for wind’s game and this grass plays against the sky. Stretching far above mounding 15 in. high, verdant ribbonlike blades, supple stems entertain an aura of tiny copper-colored inflorescences. We position ‘Windspiel’ in the frontlines and plant bold perennials such as Helianthus ‘Gold Lace’ or Vernonia crinita behind to enjoy the subtle other worldliness that’s created by looking through its blooms.

Blooms June–October

Size: 6' 0" – 7' 0" high x 5' 0" wide.

Hardy to zone 4.

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Latest News

Saturday Strolls & Plant Chats 2019!

Saturdays at 1 p…MORE



Current Staff's Favorite Plant

Current Staff's Favorite Plant

Our featured plants: Dahlia ‘Bishop Of York’x Halimiocistus wintonensis ‘Merrist Wood Cream’Helianthus ‘Undaunted (Tm) Lemon Max (Dakota Queen)’Verbascum chaixii ‘Sixteen Candles’Hakonechloa macra ‘All Gold’Santolina chamaecyparissus var. nanaPhygelius x rectus ‘Moonraker’

View our Late July 2019 Newsletter here: Shades of yellow, Midsummer botanical delights, Saturday Strolls!

Shades of yellow!

Yellow has been associated with Nirvana, Aztecs, saints, harvest-time and even the path that Dorothy followed. Various shades of this color are reputed to enhance creativity and concentration as well as cheerfulness. There are so many yellows we can include in our garden, ranging from the palest hues through chartreuse to sunshine yellow, ochre, gold and copper. Whether the color is imbued in a plant’s foliage or flowers, it can be successfully married with white, pink, orange, blue and violet blossoms, while injecting an aura of ebullience and brightness, or an autumnal mood.

Midsummer botanical delights….

Basking in some long-awaited warmth and sunshine, our garden is unfurling a delightful tapestry of color, form and texture. While strolling through our display borders and nursery this week with my wee canine cohort Boobah, I was smitten with the plants that I photographed for this newsletter. We hope one or perhaps several of our selections will beguile you as well.

Happy digging and happy mid summer from all us Digging Dog Plant Wranglers! 

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