Perennial Grasses: Choosing the right grass for your garden

By: Christina Timm

With a variety of perennial grasses hardy for Minnesota it can be hard to choose what works best for your garden. Grasses can offer interest during all four seasons and they are low-maintenance plants. From variegated to color-changing foliage and feathery plumes we carry an assortment of grasses for every garden in need of a new look. Here is a breakdown of the more popular grasses we carry and what they can offer your garden.

Looking for a grass on the shorter side...?

Carex Flacca - Blue Zinger

The Blue Zinger is know for its whimsical steel-blue foliage  and low-growing nature, making this grass great for ground cover. It is very long-lived and easy to care for. It is paired well with taller flowering plants to accent their bright colors.

Sun to shade:this grass can handle more shade if necessary.

Height: 8-16" Width: 6-12"

Zone: 5-9

Plant this grass in front or in between taller perennials for steel-blue texture.


Looking for a grass that offers two-tone foliage...?

Maiden Grass - Little Miss

The Maiden Grass provides bright green foliage in the spring time, graduating to shades of red and purple tones in the summer. Red flowers provide seed heads late summer and into fall.

Full Sun

Height: 24-26" Width: 24-36"

Zone: 4-9

Plant this grass as a centerpiece to accent its color-changing foliage and red plumes.


Looking for a color-changing grass...?

The Blues

The Blues grass is named after its handsome bluish-green foliage that later turns red in the fall. This grass blooms later in the summer but provides silvery seed stalks to complement the color-changing foliage.

Full Sun

Height: 3' Width: 12"

Zone: 3-9

Plant this grass to add clumps of color with other shrub-like perennials.


Looking for a grass with variegated foliage...?


The Avalanche grass has striking variegated foliage that lasts all season long. With blooms much like the Karl Foerster grass, these plumes add soft texture to the landscape blooming early summer.

Full Sun

Height: 3-4' Width: 2-3'

Zone: 4-9

Plant this grass for a small privacy area around an outdoor gather space.


Looking for a grass that's easy to care for...?

Karl Foerster

The Karl Foerster grass is popular for its tall, bright green foliage and feathery wheat-colored plumes. This grass grows rapidly in the spring time and blooms earlier than most other grasses providing a long bloom season from early summer well into fall.

Full Sun

Height: 4-5' Width: 2'

Zone: 4-9

Plant this grass around a fire pit or patio for low maintenance care and for a textured back drop.


So, if you think one or two of these grasses would make a great addition to your garden, stop by and let our team help select what fits your needs. Grasses are predominately a late summer into fall bloomer, which means now is the best time to plant. If planting in a full sun area be sure to water daily to keep your grass healthy and make sure it establishes before winter. It is best to leave foliage as is over the winter and prune back any dead foliage early spring before new growth starts to show, leaving about a couple inches from the ground.

Have more questions about what grasses we offer? Call today for more information: 763-420-4400.