Calamagrostis acutiflora 'Karl Foerster'


Deciduous Grass / Grass-Like, Perennial

Outstanding Qualities
Karl Foerster feather reed grass is valued for its early bloom time and its erect, architectural form, slightly tighter than other forms of feather reed grass. The 2 foot tall foliage adds structure without being overbearing. In June flower stalks rise from 5 to 6 feet tall with narrow plumes of feathery, pinkish-bronze inflorescences that change to a golden color as they mature in summer and persist well into winter. It is slow spreading and will not seed around the garden.

Culture Notes
Feather reed grass grows best in full sun with well-drained or sandy soil. It will tolerate clay if it is not waterlogged in winter. Once established only occasional watering is needed during dry weather. Keep fertilizing to a minimum to prevent flopping seed heads. Cut this grass to the ground in late winter when seed heads look unattractive and before new growth starts.

Description courtesy of Great Plant Picks

Growing Conditions

Zone: 6, 7, 8, 9

Exposure: Full Sun, Afternoon Sun

Water Needs: Drought-tolerant, Low


Size: 42 - 60 tall x 12 - 30 wide
Shape / Form: Columnar / Narrow, Compact, Upright
Foliage Texture: Fine
Foliage Quality: Fine

Features: Attracts Birds

Foliage Color: Green
Fall Color: Bronze / Copper, Brown / Chocolate

Flower Color: Brown / Chocolate, Ivory / Cream
Bloom Season: Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep, Oct, Nov, Summer, Fall

Uses and Applications

Landscape Uses: Beds and Borders, Hedges and Screens, Hell Strip, Mixed Border, Small Gardens
Special Situations: Courtyard / Urban Garden, Deer Resistant
Wildlife: Birds, Deer Resistant

More Design Considerations

Season of Interest: Spring, Summer, Fall, Pleasing Seasonal Changes, Three Seasons of Interest
Plant Behavior: Clumping
Collections: eGardenGo Favorite, Plants That Earn Their Keep

Care and Maintenance

Maintenance Level: low

Plant Combos