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Switch, Fescues & Japanese Forest Grass

Fescue is known as cool-season grass with heat, cold, and drought tolerance.

Switch Grass (Panicum virgatum)
Switch Grass is native to North America which makes it a hardy ornamental grass to grow from Zone 3 to 9 – we are Zone 5a to 6a in our area. It performs best in full sun and will reward you with an erect-stemmed, narrow clump of bright green leaves topped in late summer to fall with reddish-purple flowers. It has stunning fall colour as many of the red varieties turn a rich burgundy while other varieties take on a lovely golden hue.

Blue Fescue (Festuca ovina)
Blue Fescue also commonly known as Sheep’s Fescue is an attractive, low growing, cool season grass. It emerges blue in the summer and turns a blue green through the summer months. Densely tufted mounds have narrow, stiff, semi erect leaves. A drought tolerant grass, it prefers sun or light shade & grows in most soils.

Japanese Forest Grass (Hakonechloa macra)
Japanese Forest grass is an elegant plant that prefers shade to sunlight. Graceful, long flat blades are mostly variegated with white or yellow. They can grow in full or partial shade – full shade is less than 3 hours of sunlight and part shade is less than 6. A slow grower, it will grow from 18 to 24” tall and prefers moist soil.

There are many other types of Ornamental Grasses that are becoming quite popular. Check with our knowledgeable staff at the Garden Centre for any others you don’t see here. Other varieties often available:

Apache Rose

Super hardy, it does very well in any soil condition from sand to clay. Dense, upright columnar habit with gray-green leaves with very unique rose-coloured flower panicles in autumn.

Switch Grass

Prairie Fire

Airy plumes of green flowers rising above the foliage in mid-summer. Its attractive grassy leaves are bluish green in colour with prominent dark red tips. the foliage turns a gorgeous gold in the fall.

Switch Grass


One of the best vertical varieties of architectural distinction. Forms a dense, strongly upright, narrow clump of olive-green to blue-green foliage. Golden flower spikelets in late summer.

Switch Grass


The most popular Switch Grass, this upright, compact grass emerges a bluish green and is red tinted in summer putting on a spectacular show of dazzling burgundy-red in fall. Grass of choice!

Switch Grass

Beyond Blue

The blue grasses are certainly eye-catching & this one does not disappoint. Finely textured powder blue foliage forms a neat mound with upright flower plumes in summer.

Blue Fescue

Boulder Blue

The most durable of the blue festuca grasses. It has bright metallic blue foliage & a pleasing mounding habit. Blooms in late spring with a nice display of tawny flowers.

Blue Fescue

Blue Glow

A cool season grass with a clumping form and intensely silver-blue leaves. An early summer display of thin tan-coloured spikes for several weeks. Adds excellent interest in any garden.

Blue Fescue

Elijah Blue

A wonderful dwarf evergreen variety known for its exceptional colour. Bright silver-blue densely tufted mounds are said to be the best colour of the bunch.

Blue Fescue

Albo Striata

Adding so much interest to that special shady spot, these striking, dense clumps of arching stems with green & white variegated leaves resemble a small Bamboo plant.



A definite showstopper & a perfect marriage between green & yellow. Slender, 10” leaves arch gracefully on this compact shade grass that grows up to 15” in height.


All Gold

Showcase this brilliantly bright grass that will positively glow in that shade garden. An upright vigorous grower that tends to be chartreuse in shade and all gold in some sun.


Beni Kaze

Dense mounds of relatively short, wide leaves emerge green turning red in summer and the whole leaf finishes red & purple in the fall. Makes quite an impact!


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