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Carex - Ornamental Garden Grasses

Carex comans | Carex hachijoensis Evergold | Carex riparia Variegata.


Carex is a wide range of garden grasses, (actually sedges and not proper grasses) ranging in shape from ground hugging, through trailing and then upright. So it will be seen that it is very important to know exactly which Carex you want!

The images below show three different types of colourful foliage growth that are to be found in the  Carex Ornamental Grasses. The Carex group of grasses is also blessed with a good colour range to the foliage. Green, Golden variegated, Silver variegated and bronze.

Carex are one of the sedge group of grasses, and as that implies, they are quite happy in damp conditions. That is not to say that Carex are happy when waterlogged.

A good moist fertile soil will be the best environment, but they will also grow in normal conditions if not allowed to dry out. The evergreens in this group - Carex Evergold and Carex comans - are the best for non-moist soils, and in particular for growing in patio pots and containers.

Carex Comans in ContainerTop  Carex comans |

  • Carex comans
    • A striking plant with light bronze leaves that arch over to a length of 10in - 20cm. As can be seen in the image, it is superb in a tall container, and also gives a lot of winter interest if established in a hanging pot or basket.
      Carex comans is evergreen and good for ground covering properties. It can be planted almost anywhere in the garden, but is particularly interesting if allowed to droop over a light coloured stone in a rock garden. It is a larger plant that the Carex Evergold, otherwise it would make a good planting companion.

Carex hachijoensis Evergold  

Evergreen grass with light green and gold stripes the length of the arching but compact leaves. It forms a colourful low mound - no more than 10in tall (25cm) and spread of around 12in (30cm). Carex Evergold has a compact habit of growth and the foliage forms a dense arching mound. This grass is well suited to growing in containers - providing colour in the patio pots for 12 months of the year. It will also suit window boxes and even hanging baskets.

For garden use, it can be planted at front of herbaceous perennials or shrub border. It prefers a sunny aspect, but will also hold colour of foliage well in dappled shade.

  • Carex riparia Variegata
    • This Carex is quite distinct from the other two mentioned, in that it is neither evergreen or mound forming. It has a very upright habit of growth, and is particularly beautiful as it emerges in the spring from beneath bare earth. It is simply included on this page to show the wide differences between grasses bearing the same generic (Carex) name.

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