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Helictotrichon sempervirens AGM

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© RHS 2002

Characteristics

Plant type

Grass-like

Habit

Tufted

Resilience

Hardiness

H7 (very hardy)

Colour

Flower

Pale Brown in Summer

Foliage

Blue and Grey/Silver in Autumn, Spring, Summer and Winter

Size

Ultimate height

1-1.5 metres

Ultimate spread

0.5-1 metres

Time to ultimate height

2-5 years


Preferred common name

blue oat grass

Family

Poaceae


Helictotrichon can be deciduous or evergreen grasses, forming compact tussocks of linear leaves, with erect or arching stems bearing panicles of flowering spikelets in summer

H. sempervirens is a dense tufted evergreen grass with rather rigid blue-grey leaves to 23cm in length. Small, straw-coloured spikelets are borne in large open panicles on erect stems to 1.4m in height

Synonym(s)

  • Avena candida
  • Avena sempervirens

How to grow

Sunlight

  • Full sun

Aspect

  • South-facing, North-facing, West-facing or East-facing
  • Exposed or Sheltered

Cultivation

Grow in poor to moderately fertile, neutral to alkaline, well-drained soil

Soil

  • Well-drained or Moist but well-drained
  • Alkaline or Neutral
  • Loam, Chalk, Sand or Clay

Propagation

Propagate by division in mid-spring

Suggested planting locations and garden types

Architectural, Flower borders and beds or Low Maintenance


How to care

Pruning

Remove dead foliage and old flowered stems in spring

Pests

Generally pest free

Diseases

May be affected by a rust