Thursday, September 24, 2015

Digging Grasses

It needs a little something more, don't you think? I'm a gardener. Of course I think that.

My wild cultivated meadow looks nothing like those highly stylized meadow gardens that are so popular these days. That is to be expected when there is no budget for the garden. I am not starting with a blank slate either and I work with the raw natural ingredients on hand.

One big difference is my color is much more random and chaotic. It is not in distinct blocks of plants. The other major difference is those highly stylized naturalistic meadow gardens have a very high percentage of grasses in the mix. I have more forbs.

Enough rubbernecking already. Today I stopped, shovel in hand. Today I dug up a grass I have been coveting every time I drive by. I love those bloom spikes.

I have no idea who this grass is. My best guess is it is a Calamagrostis species. My second guess is a Sorghastrum. I most certainly could be wrong on both. I do know it grows in a clump, the leaves are about three feet and the top of the bloom spike is a good six feet. I need that height for it to rise above the Tall Flower Meadow.

One clump of this grass became six starts. The stems were loosely tied in a bundle so I could continue to enjoy them while they settle in.

Now I just need to stuff them into the Tall Flower Meadow somewhere, somehow, without causing much damage. It is far to late in the season to be stomping on things.

I did it. All six divisions got planted.

Now it better rain like they say it is supposed to. Not only do I have a fair amount of crispy happening, I have planted quite a few things in the last two weeks. I found some Blue Grama grass in the discard rack. Some evergreen variegated carex fell out of a potted arrangement I was refreshing. I transplanted a seedling viburnum and my new 'Silver Mist' junipers could use an official natural drink.

Gardy don't water if at all possible.

The garden will be completely different next year. It is completely different every year. That is the nature of a meadow. When I see those incredible pictures of those highly stylized meadow gardens, my maintenance gardener self always asks, how long will this last? How much maintenance does it take to keep them stable and where exactly are they finding the skilled gardeners it would take to do that?

You can't fool me with a pretty picture. I am a gardener. I have a meadow. I know what they do. That's why I have one. And now it has more grasses.


Lisa Greenbow said...

I have seen that grass before but i don't know what it is. It will be a nice addition to your meadow.

Sallysmom said...

Is that grass broomsedge?

Christopher C. NC said...

Lisa I hope it does well in the meadow. This acquisition should prevent me from stopping on the interstate to harvest things when I go to Florida.

Sallysmom it is definitely not Broomsedge. I have some of that. I'm beginning to think it might be Indian grass, Sorghastrum nutans. I already have some of that I grew from seed. This is more erect though. The stuff I grew from seed is floppy and I have considered removing it.

Lola said...

Love those grasses. Seems I had some of that too or maybe I had broomsedge.

beverly said...

But your garden is SO much more attractive than those highly designed meadow gardens - it is a real meadow. Great idea on the grass; yes you need tall.

Dana Foerster said...

Pic of my faves.....your NY iron weed in with the Solidago golden rod, the purple and gold together is perfect. I saved one of your close-up shots last fall in my "gallery"....suitable for framing!

Dana Foerster said...

I meant pic #10......that's the Iron weed I referred to.....sorry. DF