Grassland Environmental Ecology Park Nature Concept

Six Ornamental Grasses For a Splendid Autumn Garden

We love ornamental grasses for their versatility in garden design. Whether you want to add a twist to your mixed border or create a prairie-style garden, ornamental grasses are an excellent choice.

They bring movement, sound, colour, texture and playful joy to your outdoor space. Even a light breeze can transform a grass garden into a sensory treat, so planting them in groups creates an impressive visual display. They are primarily perennials and are easy to grow, making them a fantastic addition to any garden.

So take a look at various ornamental grasses and pick some which would be perfect for your garden or outdoor space!

Ornamental grasses above 1m

Golden oats, Stipa gigantea, are an excellent choice for creating mixed borders as they don’t obstruct the view behind them. With their greyish leaves and distinctive oat-like inflorescences, they add a beautiful touch to any setting. When the wind blows, these grasses create a fascinating natural dance that’s a sight to behold. Growing up to 2 meters tall, Golden oats prefer dry winter soil and may not thrive in wet conditions.

The Silver Feather Pampas Grass, Cortaderia selloana ‘Sunningdale Silver’, is a beautiful type of grass that produces soft and feathery panicles of creamy-white spikelets during late summer. It grows into a dense and evergreen shrub with leaves that have sharp edges. Planting pampas grass in groups creates an impressive display, but by itself it becomes an excellent focal point, considering it can grow to be two metres tall.

Various Miscanthus grasses come with different foliage and flower colours. One exciting cultivar is the compact and herbaceous Mischantus Sinensis ‘Yukushima Dwarf’. During late summer, it produces plume-like panicles of grey-white spikelets that last a long time. Another cultivar, M. Ferner Osten, develops more colour with rich red, white-tipped flowerheads that turn silver and beige in the autumn. The height of Miscanthus grass ranges from 1 to 1.5 meters.


Ornamental grasses below 1 m

Anemanthele lessoniana, also known as Pheasant-tail grass, is a delightful grass that grows in clumps and originates from New Zealand. This grass’ ability to change colours throughout the seasons makes it compelling. During the summer, its green foliage is hardly noticeable, but as autumn arrives, the leaves turn into a beautiful blend of orange, red, and yellow tones, eventually transitioning into warm autumnal brown colours. In late summer, Pheasant-tail grass produces lovely, airy flowerheads. It thrives in rich, well-drained soil and typically grows up to 50 cm tall.


The Golden Japanese forest grass, also known as Hakonechloa macra ‘Alboaurea’, is an elegant grass with beautiful yellow-striped foliage. It is a versatile plant that can be grown in containers and gardens. As the name implies, this grass is an excellent fit for Japanese garden designs, adding a touch of the Orient and vibrant colours to any space. With a height of only about 35 cm, it can thrive in partial shade.

The Northern sea oat (Chasmanthium latifolium) is a beautiful herbaceous grass that grows in clumps and has lance-shaped leaves. In the late summer and early autumn, it produces oat-like panicles that start green and turn beige with a reddish tint as they age. This grass is an excellent addition to any garden, especially near water streams or ponds. Its height doesn’t exceed 80 cm.

Found something you like? We know how to incorporate it in your garden design – contact us and let’s make it a truly special place!


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