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Pheasant’s Tail Grass (Anemanthele lessoniana)

Pheasant’s Tail grass in late September (Anemanthele lessoniana).
Pic. G. Willoughby.

Fast-growing, frost hardy, Pheasant’s Tail grass (Anemanthele lessoniana), which enjoys full sun or partial shade, will provide all year-round colour in your garden, while also offering a certain movement and structure.

Pheasant’s Tail grass enjoys moderately fertile, medium to light, well-drained soil and will form a fountain-like clump of slender colourful foliage; its blades emerging first as healthy, green shoots, before quickly changing to irregular yellow, orange, brown and red streaks.

Like so many other plants, during the colder months of the year, these grass blade colours become much more intense; worthy of beholding especially if planted and viewed in an area, to the fore of where the sun either rises or sets.

An added bonus are the sprays of airy grass flower heads, which will emerge in August/September. It does self-seed, but unwanted plants can easily be removed or simply potted up and given to other lovers of gardening. Seed-heads do provide a winter food source for finches and other seed-eating birds.

In spring, as your garden comes back to life, you can easily tease out any deceased foliage by gently and safely running your fingers through its gentle blades.

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