Feather Reed Grass (Calamagrostis x acutiflora)

Feather Reed Grass Plant Features

Feather reed grass is a popular ornamental grass loved for its stiff, upright habit (even in winter) and easy-growing nature. These features have also made it a favorite of commercial landscapers and you'll see feather reed grass planted around shopping malls, city streets, and restaurants as well as in home gardens. The green leaves and vertical shape of feather reed grass make it a good partner for most perennials and shrubs. The rich green grass blades are topped in summer by wheat-like spikes that gently sway in the breeze. In autumn, the foliage of feather reed grass turns tan and continues to provide interest through the winter. Hardy from zones 5-9

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Feather Reed Grass Growing Instructions

In the garden, feather reed grass grows best in full sun and consistently moist soil. Unlike most grasses, feather reed grass grows well in clay soils, but conversely, doesn't tolerate drought well. Adding organic matter, such as compost, and spreading a several-inch-deep layer of mulch over the soil is beneficial for feather reed grass in hot, dry spots. Divide feather reed grass every few years to keep the plants vigorous.

This spectacular ornamental grass is not intended for human or animal consumption.
  • Water

    Medium water needs

  • Light

    Outside: Sun

  • Colors


  • Special Features

    Colorful foliage

    Super-easy to grow

Complement your Feather Reed Grass

Black-Eyed Susan
The yellow flowers of Black-eyed Susan look terrific growing in and around a bed of Feather Reed Grass.

Tall Sedum produces colorful russet flowers in the fall, just as the Feather Reed Grass stems begins to turn a rich, tan color. The combination is wonderful.

Coneflowers and Feather Reed Grass are a low-maintenance option for any sunny spot.

Our favorite varieties

El Dorado Feather Reed Grass

El Dorado Feather Reed Grass

Calamagrostis 'El Dorado'

A variegated form of feather reed grass, ‘El Dorado’ develops bright green foliage with a creamy stripe down the center of each blade. The plants are not invasive and form thick 3- to 4-foot-tall clumps.

Karl Foerster Feather Reed Grass

Karl Foerster Feather Reed Grass

Calamagrostis 'Karl Foerster'

One of the most popular varieties of ornamental grass, ‘Karl Foerster’ forms handsome clumps of dark green foliage followed by feathery flower stalks in late summer. It grows 3 to 4 feet tall.

Overdam Feather Reed Grass

Overdam Feather Reed Grass

Calamagrostis 'Overdam'

You’ll enjoy plenty of color with ‘Ovardam’ feather reed grass. Growing about 2 feet tall, ‘Overdam’ has bright green foliage with creamy white margins that shade to pink in late summer.