Mexican Feather Grass

I am trying to incorporate more ornamentals in the food garden this year, seems like a contradiction in terms, but it is my front yard after all and last year, although I was thrilled with the produce, I was quite disappointed with the die back of all things annual in the fall and winter it was quite depressing after all the enjoyable summer food garden beauty and deliciousness.  I saw this flowing gentle grass planted in front of the new and might I add incredibley modern and gorgeous Tommy Douglas Library its rich green in spring, then moves in to this delicate dusty straw like colour for fall and winter, it almost ripples like water in the wind, and is going to add some much needed interest to the food growing space during the cold season. 

dwarf blue berry, tomatoes & basil under cloches, chives,mexican feather grass,

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2 Responses to Mexican Feather Grass

  1. Have you looked into edible flowers for the winter? It would solve the problem of keeping the garden attractive in the winter without needing to plant purely ornamentals. I’m not sure how many cold-weather flowers there are for the Vancouver climate, but pansies are the most well known. Pansy flowers can be added to salads as is, and also “sugared” to make beautiful and edible dessert decorations (Stu might already know how to do that).

    Of course, you can also plant pansies in the summer, but they seem to be a different variety. The ones for the cold season are called “winter pansies” and you will see the plants on sale in the autumn, about the time ornamental cabbages appear. Of course they can also be grown from seed.

  2. Interesting that you saw this Mexican Feather Grass at the newly built library. The past few years, I’ve noticed desert-like plants appearing around government type of buildings. I thought it was just the South West flora finally making their way into Canadian gardening, since many of these plants I’d already seen when Gramma and Grampa lived in southern Arizona amongst all the gravel lawns.

    But it turns out this is a gowing movement in Canadain professional gardening called xeric landscaping (drought resistant). The other morning I saw the gardener here in the condo complex out working and I mentioned to her how nice the flower gardens were looking. In reply she explained how they were perennial “continuous bloom” plantings to ensure that there was always something different coming into bloom.

    But then she went on to say that in a few years the current gardens would have to be replaced with xeres gardens. Because of the impending impact of global warming in BC, water for gardening is expected to be rationed severely in the future and landscaping will have to be likewise limited to xeric plants.

    I don’t know how real and serious all this is, but she seems to be part of the industry and gave a target date of 2020 for xeric landscaping to become the norm. That is only 10 years from now! If this is the case, then I guess your Mexican Feather Grass will be very in style then…

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