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Rannveig Guðleifsdóttir
Jan 17, 2021
In Ornamental grasses
I stumbled upon this plant in a plant nursery in 2019 and decided to buy it although I knew nothing about it. I was not disappointed. It has grown extremely well, the leaves are very decorative and the flower panicles are very unique with small, dark purple spikelets. Optimum conditions are sun or partial shade in well drained, slightly acidic, moist soil, but it can tolerate most soil types.
Molinia caerulea 'Dauerstrahl' content media
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Rannveig Guðleifsdóttir
Jan 17, 2021
In Ornamental grasses
'Aureum' is a variety of American millet with chartreuse foliage. The foliage is very decorative and the flower panicles are as well, so you could say that it has the complete package. I grew this plant from seed many years ago. It started out very slowly and for the first few years it seemed that it would grow very much. Then it really took off and has grown well and flowered every year. It even self-seeds moderately. It grows in sun or partial shade in well drained, moist soil.
Milium effusum 'Aureum' content media
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Rannveig Guðleifsdóttir
Jan 17, 2021
In Ornamental grasses
'Solar Flare' is a low growing variety of greater wood-rush with chartreuse foliage. It flowers in early summer, brown flowers. I grew it from seed and planted out the first plant in the fall of 2019. That plant survived the winter and grew well the summer of 2020. It tolerates partial shade and grows best in well-drained, moist soil.
Luzula sylvatica 'Solar Flare' content media
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Rannveig Guðleifsdóttir
Jan 17, 2021
In Ornamental grasses
Blue hair grass is a compact grass with narrow, blue-green foliage. The flowers are borne in tight panicles, cream at first, turning tan as they mature. I grew it from seed a few years ago and it seems to be hardy. It flowered for the first time in the summer of 2020. It grows best in sun and well drained soil.
Koeleria glauca content media
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Rannveig Guðleifsdóttir
Jan 16, 2021
In Ornamental grasses
This is another ornamental grass that made my heart skip a beat when I first saw photos of it, but unfortunately it will not grow here. It needs more summer heat. I've tried twice without success. I didn't even try to plant them outside. The first plant I tried to overwinter in a cold frame the winter of 2018-2019. It died. Then I saw it for sale again in the fall of 2019 and decided to try again since I had a greenhouse by then. That plant lived, but only just and has now given up on life without the hope of hot summer days. The species in native to the Mediterranean and south to Australia, so this is a plant that tolerates heat considerably better than cold, although it supposedly tolerates -20°C (-4°F). It could possibly grow in a warm sunroom or greenhouse that gets plenty of sun. It tolerates some degree of drought, but prefers evenly moist soil and needs all the sun that it can possibly get.
Imperata cylindrica 'Red Baron' content media
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Rannveig Guðleifsdóttir
Jan 16, 2021
In Ornamental grasses
Foxtail barley is one of the most commonly grown ornamental grasses here in Iceland. It's silky, purple-tinged flower spikes are especially beautiful. Unfortunately it's only annual, but given good conditions it can self seed. It needs a fairly sunny position and well drained soil, but doesn't have other soil requirements. It prefers moderately moist soil, but can tolerate drier conditions.
Hordeum jubatum content media
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Rannveig Guðleifsdóttir
Jan 16, 2021
In Ornamental grasses
It was love at first sight when I saw a photo of Japanese forest grass for the first time a few years ago. I've kept a look out for seed since, without success, so when I stumbled upon this plant in a garden center in the spring of 2020, it was never a question that it was coming home with me. I sincerely hope that it will live, but I do have a small backup plant in the greenhouse just in case it doesn't. It should grow best in partial shade in humus-rich, well drained, moist soil. Here's hoping it will grow successfully.
Hakonechloa macra 'Aureola' content media
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Rannveig Guðleifsdóttir
Jan 15, 2021
In Ornamental grasses
'Elijah Blue' is a garden cultivar of fescue with grey-blue foliage. I bought this plant in the fall of 2020, so I don't know how it will do in my garden. It needs full sun and well drained soil like other fescues that grow here.
Festuca 'Elijah Blue' content media
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Rannveig Guðleifsdóttir
Jan 14, 2021
In Ornamental grasses
'Compact Blue' is a garden variety of viviparous sheep's-fescue that forms a dense, round mound of thin, gray-blue foliage. It grew in my garden for 2-3 years, flowered once, but a difficult winter killed it. I don't remember whether it was 2017-2018 or 2018-2019, but there were several more plants lost that winter. Viviparous sheep's-fescue doesn't tolerate shade or wet soil, it grows in well drained, sandy soil in open spaces where nothing casts a shade on it. It is native to Iceland. This variety needs the same conditions to thrive.
Festuca vivipara 'Compact Blue' content media
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Rannveig Guðleifsdóttir
Jan 14, 2021
In Ornamental grasses
Blue wild rye is a medium sized grass with coarse, blue-green foliage. The flowers are gray-green at first, but then turn golden-tan as they age. I grew this plant from seed and it grew very slowly at first, but then it started sending out underground runners, so I decided to plant it in a pot, planted in the ground. So far that has kept it in check. It is best planted so that it has enough space for it's beautiful form to be enjoyed. If the flower stalks don't break in heavy winds they will stand throughout winter.
Elymus glaucus content media
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Rannveig Guðleifsdóttir
Jan 14, 2021
In Ornamental grasses
Muskingum sedge is an upright, medium sized or even tall species of sedge with green, palm-like foliage. It remains to be seen how tall it will grow here, but in it's natural habitat in N-America it can reach 90 cm in height. I bought this plant in the fall of 2020 and look forward to seeing how it will grow next summer. It needs a fairly sunny place in moist soil, but can tolerate light shade part of the day.
Carex muskingumensis content media
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Rannveig Guðleifsdóttir
Jan 14, 2021
In Ornamental grasses
Japanese sedge is a low growing sedge with green foliage which is native to Japan. The variety 'Ice Dance' has white variegated foliage. I bought this plant in the fall of 2020, so there is still very limited or no experience yet on how it will fare here. I have another plant that looks very similar which was sold without a species or cultivar name which has grown well in my yard for a few years. Hopefully this one will grow as well.
Carex morrowii 'Ice Dance' content media
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Rannveig Guðleifsdóttir
Jan 02, 2021
In Ornamental grasses
'Red Rooster' is a variety of leatherleaf sedge with thread-like, bronze coloured foliage with curled ends. It doesn't wilt during the winter months, so it could be said that it is everbrown. The first spring after I planted it I wasn't quite sure whether it was alive until it showed clear signs of new growth. 😁 So it survived winter and grew well the summer of 2020. It has an arching habit that is best showcased if it is planted with low growing plants that don't crowd it. It needs evenly moist soil that is not too dry or too wet. It is especially sensitive to wet conditions during the winter months, so the soil must be well drained. It can tolerate partial shade, but grows best in full sun.
Carex buchananii 'Red Rooster' content media
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Rannveig Guðleifsdóttir
Dec 31, 2020
In Ornamental grasses
'Overdam' is a variety of feather reed grass with variegated foliage and purple tinged flowers. Although it hasn't been awarded any awards, I must say that I find it prettier than 'Karl Foerster', both the foliage and the flowers. Unfortunately, the flower stalks are prone to breaking in strong winds. Apart from that it seems hardy and grows well. It grows best in sun and well drained, fertile soil.
Calamagrostis x acutiflora 'Overdam' content media
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Rannveig Guðleifsdóttir
Dec 31, 2020
In Ornamental grasses
Feather reed grass is a natural hybrid between two species native to Europe and Asia, C. arundinacea and C. epigejos. 'Karl Foerster' is a tall garden hybrid with green foliage and panicles of purple tinged flowers that turn golden tan as they mature. This variety is one of the most popular ornamental grass varieties in the world and has been awarded the RHS Award of Garden Merit. It seems hardy so far, my plant is still young and needs a few more years to reach mature height. It needs a sunny place and fertile, well drained soil.
Calamagrostis x acutiflora 'Karl Foerster' content media
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Rannveig Guðleifsdóttir
Dec 30, 2020
In Ornamental grasses
This variety of tuber oat grass has variegated foliage that is very decorative in the perennial bed. It is fairly tall, but can be kept lower with regular cutting if people want to keep it compact, but then it won't flower. The inflorescence is a panicle of light grey flowers that are very pretty as cut flowers. Like other grasses it needs a fairly sunny position, although it can tolerate partial shade. It tolerates most soil types, but prefers fertile, well drained soil.
Arrhenatherum elatius ssp. bulbosum 'Variegatum' content media
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Rannveig Guðleifsdóttir
Dec 27, 2020
In Ornamental grasses
Meadow foxtail is not grown as an ornamental plant, but is a common forage grass in agriculture. The variety 'Aureovariegata' however, is a beautiful ornamental grass with chartreuse foliage with green stripes. It is hardy and easy to grow, it tolerates most soil types, apart from very wet soil or very dry soil. The optimal growing conditions are well drained, moist, fertile soil in a sunny position. The flowers are identical to the species, and whether they have ornamental value is subject to opinion, I personally don't find them very pretty, so I've cut the grass when it starts flowering, both to remove the flower stalks and also to get fresh, new foliage. This variety doesn't spread excessively.
Alopecurus pratenses 'Aureovariegata' content media
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Rannveig Guðleifsdóttir
Dec 14, 2020
In Ferns
Hard shield fern is a very beautiful fern with stiff, glossy green foliage that is supposedly evergreen. I bought this plant last spring, so it remains to be seen whether the leaves will wither and how it will grow here. It needs a sheltered position in shade or partial shade, in well-drained, humus-rich, moist soil.
Polystichum aculeatum content media
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Rannveig Guðleifsdóttir
Dec 14, 2020
In Ferns
Alpine buckler-fern is a rather tall, native species like lady fern and male fern. It only grows in three isolated regions of the country, the West fjords and the Snæfellsnes and Reykjanes peninsulas. The leaves are more finely divided than the leaves of the male fern, but not as finely divided as the leaves of the lady fern. I've had this fern for over a decade and it has grown very well, so a hardy and easy to grow fern. Optimum conditions are fertile, well-drained, humus-rich, moist soil in a shaded, sheltered position.
Dryopteris expansa content media
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Rannveig Guðleifsdóttir
Dec 14, 2020
In Ferns
Autumn fern is a beautiful fern with glossy foliage that is tinged with bronze at first and turns green later. I bought it this spring, so I don't know how it will fare in my garden. This species is native to China and Japan and is a popular garden plant. It needs the same growing conditions as most other ferns, well-drained, humus-rich, moist soil in shade or partial shade.
Dryopteris erythrosora content media
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Rannveig Guðleifsdóttir
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