Cool Season Grasses

vs.

Warm Season Grasses

 

What's the difference?

You may be wondering what the difference is between cool season grasses and warm season grasses.  What's the big deal?

 

​Cool/Warm seasons for grasses are different than the USDA zone hardiness recommendations, which simply tell you if your plant will survive through the winter or not.  The two different grass seasons explain when an ornamental grass will put on most of its growth and look its best.  

 

The difference is very important when planning your landscape design plan.  For example, cool season grasses break dormancy very early in the spring usually as soon as the temperatures are above freezing.  They also bloom earlier than warm season grasses.  Cool season grasses will provide that flush of new growth early in the spring to brighten up your landscape.  Some cool season grasses, however, might go dormant during extremely hot summer days, so you wouldn't want to make them the only focal point in your garden.  They will however, put on new growth again in the fall, extending color in your landscape.

 

Warm season grasses differ from cool season in that they don't start growing until the soil warms to 65-70 degrees.  This means they don't start growing in our area until mid-to-late May.  Well after cool season grasses are growing.  They will however, look good and fare well in hot, dry weather.  Most warm season grasses are extremely drought tolerant once they are established.  

 

We would recommend balancing cool season and warm season grasses in your design to provide you with beautiful color and texture in your landscape for a longer growing period.

 

 

 

So which is which?  Below is a list categorizing the seasons of grasses we carry.

 

 

 
COOL SEASON 
(Growth in April/Early May)
 

Autumn Moor Grass

Avalanche

Blue Zinger

Boulder Blue

Bronzeschleier (Tufted Hair Grass

Eldorado

Ice Dance Sedge

Karl Foerster

Korean feather reed grass

Northern Lights (Tufted Hair Grass)

Overdam

Prarie Fire Sedge

Sapphire (Blue Oat Grass)

Striped Tuber Oat Grass

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

WARM SEASON

(Growth in Mid-Late May)

 

Adagio  (Maiden Grass)

Aureola (Golden Varigated Hakone Grass)

Cabaret

Cassian

Dallas Blues (Switchgrass)

Foxtrot

Frost Grass

Giant Miscanthus

Giant Sacaton

Gracillimus (Maiden Grass)

Heavy Metal (Switchgrass)

Indian Grass

Little Zebra

Lord Snowden 'Big Bluestem'

Morning Light (Maiden Grass)

Moudry (Black Fountain Grass)

Northern Pampas Grass

Northern Sea Oats

Northwind (Switchgrass)

Ogon (Golden Varigated Sweet Flag)

Purple Love Grass

Prairie Muchkin

Prairie Drop Seed

Prairie Fire (Red Switchgrass)
Prairie Sky (Switchgrass)

Shenadoah (Red Switchgrass)

Side Oats Grama

Silberfeder (Silver Feather Grass)

Skyracer (Moor Grass)

The Blues (Little Blue Stem)

Thundercloud

Zebrinus (Zebra Grass)