Tufted Hairgrass, Deschampsia cespitosa

Tufted Hairgrass

Deschampsia cespitosa

Sun Shade:
Bloom Time: Summer
Zones: 4, 5
Soil Conditions: Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil Moisture: Medium, Moist
Color: Yellow
Fragrance: No
Height: 1 - 3 feet
Spacing: 1 - 2 feet


Tufted Hair Grass (Deschampsia cespitosa) is a clump-forming, cool season grass which is often grown as an ornamental. The grass emerges green and turns gold late in the season, keeping good color and form for winter interest. It typically forms a low, dense tussock (to 16 inches tall) of very thin (1/2 inch wide), arching, flat to inrolled, dark green grass blades (to 2 feet long). Numerous flower stems rise in summer from the foliage mound to a height of 3 feet bearing wide, airy panicles (to 20 inches long) of tiny, variably-colored flowers (tones of gold, silver, purple and green) which form a cloud over the foliage that is particularly attractive when backlit. Flower panicles turn yellowish-tan after bloom as the seed ripens and may remain attractive through much of the winter. One of the few ornamental grasses that grows well in shade.

Easily grown in average, medium, well-drained soils in part shade. Prefers moist, organically rich soils. Cut old foliage to the ground in late winter before new shoots appear. Flowering stems may be removed in fall to tidy plants or left for winter interest. This is one of the few ornamental grasses that grows well in moderately shady locations, however it will not flower well if moved into too much shade.

Plant Notes and Herbal Uses
  Highly ornamental.
  Useful for stabilizing disturbed sites, streambanks and shorelines.
  May self-seed in optimum growing conditions.
  One of the few ornamental grasses that grows well in shade.
Further Information

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