Bird Families

Gray fescue: description, types, planting and care


Gray fescue planting and care in the open field Growing from seeds photo

Fescue in all its varieties is incredibly decorative precisely for its simplicity: thick thin needle-leaves form real "balls", from which during flowering rare spikelets stick out on tall thin pedicels. It looks perky and impressive, especially if the cereals set off brighter flowers.

Gray shades are especially interesting due to their rarity. A slightly bluish tint effectively sets off any green plants and even bright flowers. It is impossible to refuse such an attractive plant, which, moreover, is very easy to care for.


This decorative cereal loves the sun very much, so choose well-lit areas. Fans of rocky gardens will be especially delighted: the plant easily tolerates heat and lack of moisture, so feel free to plant fescue where sometimes it will be possible to "forget" about it.

It should be remembered that partial shade or shadow is perceived by the cereal sharply negatively, and gray-gray species can change color, having lost their decorative bluish tint.

The soil

Garden soil of any composition is suitable for fescue, but loose soil without moisture stagnation is preferable. For the full development of the plant, it is necessary that the soil structure is air and moisture permeable. It is easy to achieve the desired structure: if the soil is clayey, heavy, you need to add sand and a little loose organic matter (rotted compost), but no more than a third of a bucket per square meter. An excess of humus is perceived negatively by the plant. The best soil for a plant is rocky soil with good drainage, where fescue shows itself in all its glory.


The good cold resistance of fescue makes it possible to grow it in areas with severe winters, without even covering it. When purchasing planting material, it is better to consult how successfully this species takes root in the conditions of your area and choose already tested varieties. So you can protect yourself from any unpleasant surprises and get a variety that will feel great in the climatic conditions of your area.

Transplant and rejuvenation

Fescue grows in one place for up to 2-3 years, after which the bush begins to degenerate. To rejuvenate the planting, you will have to dig up and divide the bushes, planting them less often. You should not be upset at the same time: fescue grows quickly and in the first year they reach their maximum decorative effect.

How to care for fescue

Outdoor fescue care Photo with flowers

Lazy gardeners will be very happy to know that besides a good choice of location and soil, the plant does not need anything else. Yes, a transplant every three years. The rest of the worries about watering and feeding will be completely unnecessary.

Mulching the soil with decorative pebbles will give a good result: weeds will not break through such mulch, condensation will form under it at night (here's watering for you), and in the heat there will be no intense evaporation of moisture.

To keep the bushes in a beautiful form, in the spring it is enough to remove the dead leaves by cutting them off or "combing out" with a rake. After flowering, it will not be superfluous to cut off dried panicles. That's all the "wisdom" in caring for fescue.

Reproduction of fescue by dividing the bush

Transplanting, rejuvenating the bush and dividing it, propagating fescue - all this is a simple and accessible process for everyone. It is enough to pry a lump of earth under the fescue with a shovel and dig it out. With a sharp knife, they divide the bush into several parts, preserving the integrity of the earthen coma. The dead central part of the bush is thrown away.

New bushes are planted at a distance of 15-20 cm if you want to get a solid carpet, or less often (50-60 cm) so that the plants look apart.

You can start breeding fescue in early spring, for which, in the fall, mother plants dug out and transplanted into pots are brought into a cold room. They contain them at low positive temperatures, but provide good lighting. In the spring, the plants are separated and planted in a flower bed.

Growing fescue from seeds

Fescue seeds photo How and when to sow fescue

How and when to sow fescue in the ground

It is not difficult to grow fescue from seeds. Sowing begins at the end of March, as soon as the soil is ripe. The seeds are large enough, so you can plant decorative fescue one seed at a distance of 10-15 cm. The planting depth is 2-3 cm. Lawn grasses are simply evenly scattered over the surface of the ground and covered with a rake. In the spring, there is enough moisture in the ground for the plants to germinate. But if you want to speed up the process, you can occasionally water the garden bed, however, avoiding overflow and the formation of an earthen crust.

When shoots appear, you need to remove the weeds and loosen the soil. Fescue grows and develops very quickly, so by the end of summer you will have full-fledged bushes.

How to grow fescue from seed for seedlings at home

Patient gardeners like to grow fescue through seedlings. To do this, at the end of February, seedling cups are prepared, filled with loose earth. They are planted in each glass for 1-2 seeds and lightly watered. You need to choose a place that is warm and well-lit, preferably south or east windows.

Remember that moisture stagnation is unacceptable, therefore, there must be drainage holes in the bottom of the cups, and excess water from the pan must be drained.

Plants germinate and develop quickly enough. Already in April, provided there is no frost, the seedlings of fescue are planted on a flower bed by transshipment. The distance between the holes is about 15 cm.

Blue or gray fescue Festuca glauca

Gray fescue planting and care Blue fescue photo

The most popular species, which has earned the attention of gardeners for its unusual blue tint. Separately planted bushes, growing, form spherical curtains, reminiscent of fluffy pompons. The thin, sharp leaves are tough enough to maintain their shape even in strong winds and rainfall. During flowering, rare paniculate inflorescences beautifully emphasize the round balls of leaves. the height of the bushes is from 30 to 60 cm, depending on the variety.

Fescue Mayra Festuca mairei

Fescue Mayra Festuca mairei photo

Gives a special romance to any flower garden, diluting colors and adding touches of naturalness, non-interference of man in the harmony of nature. Beautiful spheres, which have a somewhat "disheveled" appearance, are effectively combined with bright colors, for example, with echinacea.

Red meadow fescue Festuca rubra

Red fescue Festuca rubra photo

The lawn grass, reaches a height of 60 cm, perfectly tolerates mowing. It has long been a pasture plant, and only recently, landscape designers have shown interest in it due to the unusual reddish shade of spike-shaped inflorescences.

Fescue filamentous Festuca filiformis

Filamentous fescue Festuca filiformis photo

The incredibly thin needle-like leaves of this plant look beautiful next to other plants, being an expressive backdrop for the brighter representatives of the flora. Landscape designers are happy to use thread-like fescue in group plantings, adding elegance and unique charm to the compositions.

Glacial fescue Festuca glacialis

Glacial fescue Festuca glacialis photo

An excellent plant for rock gardens: with its tough needle-like leaves, the grass looks very impressive against the background of large decorative stones. The spherical compact shape is especially attractive for its complete appearance. Paniculate spikelets-inflorescences with a light lilac hue turn the bush into a fantastic fireworks display.

Siberian fescue Festuca sibirica

Siberian fescue Festuca sibirica photo

A very frost-resistant perennial that can be grown in the harshest conditions.This fescue is planted as a lawn grass and as an ornamental grass in flower beds. The grass is low, up to 20 cm in height, paniculate spike-shaped inflorescences have a reddish tint. It grows even on poor rocky soils, it does without watering.

Valissa fescue or fescue Festuca valesiaca

Valissian fescue or fescue fescue Festuca valesiaca photo

It resembles Siberian, it grows very densely in the ground, forming strong sods. The density of green bristles is obtained through annual self-seeding, due to which dying old bushes are replaced by young ones. It drowns out any weeds, aggressively conquering territories. Very decorative during the flowering period: light gray panicles-inflorescences stand out effectively against the background of dark green needle-like leaves.

Reed fescue Festuca arundinacea

Reed fescue Festuca arundinacea photo

It is a highly resistant to trampling lawn grass. It has a well-developed, powerful root system, thanks to which it is able to extract moisture from the deep layers of the soil, even during dry periods. Retains an attractive appearance and does not fade even in extreme heat. Perfectly tolerates a haircut. Due to its many advantages, it has earned a special love among landscape designers.

Sheep fescue Festuca ovina

Sheep fescue Festuca ovina photo

This is also a lawn grass characterized by intensive growth. The strong roots of fescue are so intertwining the top of the soil that it is not subject to erosion during the rainy season. The grass is resistant to trampling, tolerates frequent haircuts, quickly growing young greens.

Meadow fescue Festuca pratensis

Meadow fescue Festuca pratensis photo

High frost resistance, excellent endurance in any conditions have won high popularity of this lawn grass, which was included in various mixtures. Perfectly tolerates haircuts, quickly restores vegetative mass. Very decorative even in group plantings in a flower bed.

Blue or gray fescue in landscape design a selection of photos

Gray fescue in landscape design photo

The spherical shape of the bushes, the unusual metallic bluish tint give room for imagination: in any flower garden or rock garden, such a plant will become a real highlight. Fescue is planted randomly in group plantings or geometric patterns are formed in the form of rows, rectangles, semicircles, circles, triangles. Cereals are beautiful with any wildflowers or vibrant red, blue flowers.

Fescue in the design of a recreation area photo

Gray fescue is planted not only in flower beds: alternating meadows of various decorative grasses in the roadside area look quite original.

Blue fescue planting and care Photo in urban landscape

Plantings with field grasses like ornamental yarrow are very beautiful.

Blue fescue growing from seed photo

Compositions with undersized flowers of purple, blue, red shades are popular. White and cream flowers also look good against a background of bluish fescue.

Gray fescue photo with flowers

Joint plantings of different types of fescue, for example, blue and Valissian, also look beautiful.

Fescue in landscape design photo

There are many options, the main thing is to use your imagination and not be afraid to experiment. Inspiration to create your own unique garden design!

Gray fescue in urban design photo

Gray fescue in a rocky garden photo

Fescue blue and young in the photo

Gray fescue planting and care in the open field