Ornamental grasses provide a unique ambiance and an outstanding look in your garden. The slightest wind sizzles and the sound it makes is amazing.
One unique species of ornamental grass adored all around is the feather reed grass and its famous hybrid cultivar, Karl Foerster (Calamagrostis x acutiflora).
It is named after a German writer, photographer, and nurseryman who discovered it at Hamburg Botanical Garden in the 1930s.
Like other ornamental grasses, the Foerster feather reed grass is grown vertically. It is a four-seasoned plant that changes colors depending on the season.
Even with the slightest wind, this grass will elegantly dance into the wind. From the early summer season, the stalks are reddish brown, shifting to golden tan or brown in early Fall.
Let’s get to know this plant more.
This feather reed grass, when mature, can grow to 4 to 6 feet. Karl Foerster feather reed grass requires very low fertilization and average watering. It also requires very low maintenance and is a cool-season grass.
Additionally, it requires moist but well-drained soil.
Karl Foerster Grass Diseases And Pests
It’s unknown whether the Karl Foerster grass has serious infection issues or pest troubles. Hence, even beginners can plant this easily manageable plant.
But in a few regions, grass can be susceptible to rust fungi. So it’s important to ensure sufficient air circulation between indoor plants and avoid wetting the foliage to stop this from happening.
Best Companion Plant For Karl Foerster Grass
There are plants that tend to grow better and healthier around Karl Foerster Grass, and some plants do not complement well when grown near it.
First, let us have a look at the good companion plants of Karl Foerster Grass.
Passionate gardeners find the Rudbeckia the best companions for the Foerster grass owing to their similar growing conditions and colorful beauty during the fall season.
Rudbeckia grows under a lot of sunlight and water intake soil, making it easier for Karl Foerster Grass to grow next to. Would love to be a neighbor.
Rudbeckia are perennial flowering plants and can be grown annually. as they bloom charmingly in fall around the same time when the reed grass takes on its beautiful golden tan-looking shrugs on.
2. Maiden Grass Graccimilus
Maiden grass graccimilus can be an excellent companion plant for Karl Foerster Grass.
It grows in a very close bunch to the reed grass, giving a flower similar to the golden tan produced by Karl Foerster during fall. What’s more, the visual beauty it will create will be unmatched.
3. Hairy Vetch
Hairy vetch (Vicia villosa) is one of Karl Foerster grass’s must-have companion plants. As it provides the important nutrients reed grass requires, it helps grow grass faster.
One great benefit hairy vetch provides is the legume properties it possesses,
Legumes are crops that have soil nutrients enhancing characteristics, an essential element of crop rotation and producing crops.
Another benefit of growing hairy vetch beside reed grass is its purple flowers.
Spring is when these two planted together bloom well, waiting for the golden flowers that mark the Foerster in late summer.
We all like Spinach, don’t we? Except for kids, maybe. Apart from their healthy property, they can grow in a confined space, adding more value to any garden.
Spinach compliments the reed garden well, as it loves water and shade. Reed Garden provides partial shade owing to its taller height.
You will always find peas in the list of good-to-have plants. It is also a good companion for Karl Foerster Grass.
Reed grass is planted in rows in a bunch around the yard, the empty spaces in between could be better for many garden workers, and this is where peas become so helpful.
Peas are crops that are used to take up vacant spaces when available. Like feather reed grass, they thrive in sunlight. So the best season for them to grow is fall to autumn. Also, they are pleasing to the eyes and prevent soil from pests and other harmful soil infections.
Its overall features are much more than being a cover crop. Peas take care of the soil nutrients as it recharges the soil’s nitrogen, a characteristic similar to legumes. Peas are often considered great companion plants for Karl Foerster grass as they have the same watering needs.
Chrysanthemums, sometimes called mums, are perfect for growing with Karl Foerster plants. They grow to 2 to 4 feet and delight the eyes when they bloom.
They are both annuals and perennials, the same as Foerster reeds. And compliment each other well.
They are best planted in early spring and require good air circulation. Keeping them moist is very important. Less water can slow the desired growth.
Liatris, also known as blazing star, is loved for its unique flower heads with tiny, upward bottle brush spires. The uncontaminated and genuine liatris produce bright purple flower spikes and look breathtaking in pink and white.
The main aspect of why Liatris is a great companion plant is the similar colored flower it produces. For someone who loves theme colors in different styles, the Liatris allows you to explore summer with lilac while enjoying the golden color of autumn with your reed grass.
8. Russian Sage
Russian sage is one perfect plant you should go with to compliment your garden with Karl Foerster grass. The purple-blue combination of flowers it produces, and various ornamental grass look breathtaking.
It’s very easy to grow and adjustable with any soil type. Also, it drains well. It needs direct sunlight, so it blooms during summertime.
9. Elijah Blue Fescue
Elijah blue fescue is one of the prettiest dwarf ornamental grass. This plant lasts for an entire year with its eye-catching blue hue characteristics.
It is also a drought-tolerant plant making it a good companion to the Karl Foerster grass plant. Besides the shine and beauty of Karl Foerster, the long leaves of this companion plant should provide a lovely contrast.
Plants You Should Avoid When Planting Karl Foerster Grass
Some plants shouldn’t be planted alongside Karl Foerster Grass as they can harm their growth and, at the same time, stunt reed grass’s growth. Below are some of the plants in question.
1. Shade-Loving Plants
Foerster grass likes direct sunlight. It can become diseased, or its growth may get hampered when it gets partial shade. Plants that want to grow in the shade and enjoy less sun are not good neighbors of Karl Foerster Grass.
2. Fast Growing Plants
Plants that grow rapidly are not good companions of Foerster reed grass. Plants that grow fast in their growing season can overtake garden beds very quickly, and then slow-growing plants like Karl Foerster Grass’s growth are sabotaged.
Planting rapid-growing plants with Karl Foerster Grass is not a good idea.
How to Choose The Right Karl Foerster Grass Companion Plants?
No matter how much you read or learn through textbooks, experience always gives results.
Also, you will know more about gardening from seasoned gardeners than you do by reading books. Plants are paired based on the knowledge seasoned gardeners have gathered over the years.
Here Are Some Basic Rules For Picking The Right Companion Plant For Your Main Crop:
Choosing the right companion can be challenging. When choosing plants as companions to your grass, always determine the growth rate and the height of the plants.
If you have a tall plant or a vigorously growing plant, it can block sunlight for your grass or will take your garden area too quickly, even before your plant’s roots spread.
Always determine the types and categories of your companion plants before selecting them. Try choosing companion plants with different sunlight needs, which flowers at different times of the year, or have different water and soil requirements.
In this article, you have learned about 8 (eight) good companions of the Karl Foerster Grass plant and what plants to avoid as neighbors of Forester grass.
We hope this read provides all the information you need to know to make your garden even brighter and more beautiful.
Which companion plant will you choose to witness amazing greenery and gorgeous flowers? Please let’s know in the comment.