Broadleaved Evergreen : Conifers : Deciduous Shrubs : Ornamental Shade Trees : Perennials and Ferns : Grasses and Bamboos : Groundcovers : Vines and Creepers : Water Plants




ALOPECURUS (Gramineae)


Alopecurus pratensis 'Aureus'

H:to 15cm                                Z:5

L/U: grouping

Gold-leaved perennial grass with pale-green flower spikelets in summer, often tinged purple.


ARUNDO (Gramineae) (Giant Reed)


Arundo donax

H:to 6m                                Z:6

L/U: solitary or grouping

Hardy, wide-spreading, Bamboo-like grass with grey-green, slightly-scabrous, 60cm long, 6cm wide leaves.  Red-tinged, 60cm long flower panicles become silvery-grey, blooming in fall.  Prefers moist, rich soil.  (Southern China)


Arundo donax 'Variegata'

H:1-4m                                Z:6

L/U: solitary or grouping

Creamy-yellow to white variegated leaves, stripes most pronounced in spring.  Completely dormant in cold climates.  Requires abundant moisture.  Used to make paper and artificial silk.  (Southern China)


BRIZA (Gramineae)


Briza media (Quaking Grass)

L/U: solitary or mass planting

H:40-60cm                                Z:5

Small, cool-season, evergreen grass with showy green, heart-shaped flowers from April-June, turning golden with maturity and rising above the foliage.  Medium green leaves are soft to the touch and form dense clumps.




Calamagrostis x acutiflora 'Karl Foerster'

H:to 1.5m                                Z:5

L/U: solitary or grouping

Persistent, easily-grown natural hybrid with many ornamental features throughout the year.  Loose, fan-like, buff flower panicles in June become yellow after flowering.  In fall the ripe panicles re-open and persist into winter.


CAREX (Cyperaceae)


Carex glauca (Blue Sedge)

H:to 60cm                                Z:5

L/U: grouping

Adaptable, clumping, silver-blue sedge.


Carex morrowii aureovariegata 'Old Gold'

(Variegated Japanese Sedge)

H:45-60cm                                Z:5

L/U: grouping

Clumping, evergreen grass with creamy-yellow, striped-centered leaves and lush, arching foliage, appearing golden-yellow in the garden.  Tall, graceful leaves arch towards the ground, covering the brownish flower spikes.  Prefers partial shade in moist, gravelly, well-drained soil.  (Japan)


CORTADERIA (Gramineae)


Cortaderia selloana (Pampas Grass)

H:2-3m                                Z:7

L/U: solitary or grouping

Large, ornamental, flowering grass forms a dense clump of sharp-edged, grey-green foliage.  Flower panicles on sturdy stalks extend beyond the foliage.  Plumes are silky at first, becoming fluffy with maturity.  Colour varies from silvery-white to creamy-white to pinkish tones in late July-August, persisting into early-winter.  Prefers full sun in fertile, well drained soil.




Deschampsia caespitosa (Tufted Hairgrass)

H:1m                                Z:3

L/U: grouping

Clumps of tidy, pleated foliage stay evergreen in warmer areas.  Highlighted by loose, airy, golden-white flower panicles which emerge silky-green in May.


Deschampsia caespitosa 'Bronzeschleier'

(Bronze Veil Tufted Hairgrass)

H:1m                                Z:3

L/U: grouping

Similar to species with bronze-yellow flowers.  Best in milder climates.


ELYMUS (Gramineae) (Lyme Grass)


Elymus arenarius 'Glaucus' (Blue Lyme Grass)

H:30-90cm                                Z:4

L/U: grouping

Deciduous, spreading grass with metallic-blue, 30-45cm long foliage on stout, thick stems.  Inconspicuous flowers bloom sporadically from June-August, emerging bluish-grey, turning wheat-colour with age.


FESTUCA (Gramineae)


Festuca ovina 'Glauca' (syn. F. cinerea)

(Blue Fescue)

H:20-30cm                                Z:5

L/U: ground cover or accent

Clumping, cool season, evergreen grass with soft, fine-texture, greenish-blue, somewhat weeping foliage.  Flowers emerge bluish-purple in May-June, becoming golden as they mature, greyish at maturity.




Helictotrichon sempervirens (Blue Oat Grass)

H:30-50cm                                Z:4

L/U: grouping

Clumping evergreen grass noted for its bright-blue foliage and showy flowers.



IMPERATA (Gramineae)


Imperata cylindrica 'Rubra'

(Japanese Blood Grass)

H:50cm                                Z:6

L/U: grouping

Translucent, upright foliage forming slowly spreading colonies.  Vertical leaves emerge bright-green with wine-red, stained tips in the spring, becoming increasingly red as the season progresses, blood red by fall, copper coloured in winter.  Prefers moist soil in full sun.  (Japan)


MISCANTHUS (Gramineae)


Miscanthus floridulus (Giant Chinese Silver Grass)

H:2-4m                                Z:5

L/U: solitary or grouping

Large, clump-forming perennial with linear, arching leaves to 90cm long.  Flowers in 30cm long spikes.


Miscanthus sinensis 'Purpurascens' (Flame Grass)

H:0.9-1.2m                                Z:5

L/U: solitary or grouping

A handsome, reddish-purple, compact grass with brilliant, orange-red fall colour.


Miscanthus sinensis 'Strictus' (Porcupine Grass)

H:1m                                Z:5

L/U: solitary or grouping

Clumping grass with bright-yellow, upward-pointing, variegated, porcupine-like foliage.


PENNISETUM (Gramineae)


Pennisetum alopecuroides 'Hameln'

(Dwarf Fountain Grass)

H:to 60cm                                Z:6

L/U: grouping

Early-blooming, dwarf cultivar with attractive, fluffy, buff, often rosy-coloured flowers in 25cm tall spikes in early-September.


PHORMIUM (Agavaceae) (Flax Lily)


Phormium tenax 'Atropurpureum'

(New Zealand Flax)

H:1-2m                                Z:7

L/U: solitary or grouping

Evergreen perennial with purple-bronze, sword-like, vertical leaves from the base.  Red flower stalks stand above the foliage.


Phormium tenax 'Jack Spratt'

H:25-30cm                                Z:7

L/U: grouping

Small, clumping, burgundy-bronze, evergreen perennial with arching, sword-like blades.


TYPHA (Typhaceae)


Typha minima (Dwarf Japanese Cattail)

H:50-75cm                                Z:4                                *O.C. 50cm (3)

L/U: grouping

Spreading plant with short, narrow leaves, yellow-brown in fall and showy, reddish-brown, barrel-shaped flower spikes in May-June.






Arundinaria pygmaea (syn Sasa pygmaea)

H:20-25cm                                Z:5

L/U: understories, shaded slopes

Hardy, dwarf bamboo forming a carpet of slender stems with 13cm long, 2cm wide leaves.  (Japan)




Fargesia nitida

H:3-4m / W:6-12m

L/U: solitary

Clump-forming grass with 5-8cm long leaves, distinguished by its purple-flushed canes and elegant arching habit.  Prefers partial shade.  (China)




Phyllostachys aurea (Golden Bamboo)

H:2.5-3.5m                                Z:7

Somewhat clumping, stiffly-upright form with golden-green, 8-18cm long, 1-2cm wide leaves and dense, bright-green canes, maturing to pale-yellow, crowding at the nodes at the base of each cane and swelling beneath each node.  (China)


Phyllostachys aureosulcata

(Yellow-Green Bamboo)

H:5-7m                                Z:5

Hardy, strongly-upright form with rough new canes, golden-yellow on the flat side and dark-green, loose, and translucent leaves.  (China)


Phyllostachys bambusoides (Giant Timber Bamboo)

H:10-20m                                Z:7

Impressively hardy, giant Bamboo with culms to 15cm diameter and leaves to 20cm long, 1.5-3cm wide.  Used as construction material.  (Central Eastern China)


Phyllostachys bissetti (Bisset Bamboo)

H:7m                                Z:7

Relatively small-growing, hardy Phyllostachys which forms a dark, dense canopy.  (Zhejiang, Sichuan China)


Phyllostachys elegans

H:to 10m                                Z:7

A tall-growing Bamboo with 8-15cm long, 12-20mm wide leaves.  (Eastern China)


Phyllostachys glauca (Glaucous Bamboo)

H: to 12m                                Z:7

Hardy, tall-growing species adaptable to various soils.  Green, 5-7cm wide culms become purplish brown.  (Eastern China)


Phyllostachys nigra (Black Bamboo)

H:4-6m                                Z:7

Graceful, arching Bamboo with nodding shoots and attractive, dense foliage.  Shoots are green at first, stems turn entirely black after the first summer.  Young shoots edible in spring.  A conspicuous, white ring can easily be seen under each node.  (China & Japan)


Phyllostachys pubescens

H:20m                                Z:7

Running bamboo has culms to 15cm diameter, densely pubescent when emerging.  Leaves are relatively small, 4-11cm long and 0.5-1.5cm wide.  (Eastern Central China)


Phyllostachys purpurata (syn. P. heteroclada)

(Solid Stem or Water Bamboo)

H:4-5m                                Z:7

Straight, tall bamboo with grey mature culms, and air canals in rhizomes and roots allowing it to grow well in wet soils.  Young shoots are edible. (Jiangsu, Hunan China)


Phyllostachys rubromarginata

H:4-6m                                Z:8

Open form with broad leaves, erect culms.  Pale-green internodes become coated with wax, turning grey to yellowish-grey with age.  Young shoots are edible.  (Zhejiang, Guangxi China)


Phyllostachys vivax (Viver's Bamboo)

H:to 15m                                Z:6

Hardy, tall-growing, timber Bamboo with arching tops, grey-green to yellow-green, 4-8cm wide canes and dark-green, 9-18cm long, 1-1.5cm wide leaves. Young shoots are edible.  (Eastern China)


SASA (Gramineae)


Sasa palmata 'Nebulosa' (Bambusa Palmata)

H:2-3m                                Z:7                                *O.C. 1.20m (3)

Full, dense, weeping, vigorous Bamboo with large, green, 35cm long, 9cm wide leaves on green, purple-blotched stems.  Prefers full sun to partial shade.  (Japan)


Sasa veitchii (Silver Edged Sasa)

H:to 1m                                Z:7                                *O.C. 1.00m (4)

L/U: understories, difficult sites

A species known for its cream-coloured leaf margins in winter.  Differs from Arundinaria by its solitary branches arising from each node and broader, oblong leaves.  (Japan)


SHIBATAEA (Gramineae)


Shibataea chinensis (Gooseplum Bamboo)

H:60cm                                Z:8

Dwarf, running Bamboo with thin culms displaying glossy-green foliage.  Branches are equal in length bearing one leaf at each tip..  (Southern China)


Broadleaved Evergreen : Conifers : Deciduous Shrubs : Ornamental Shade Trees : Perennials and Ferns : Grasses and Bamboos : Groundcovers : Vines and Creepers : Water Plants

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