More Information About Carex
Carex (sedge) is the Rodney Dangerfield of the shade ornamental grasses for sale..."it don't get no respect". From a garden design standpoint, sedge is usually lumped together with other ornamental grasses, but Carex is actually not a grass, but a grass-like plant called a sedge in the family Cyperaceae. We like sedges for their fine textured leaves, for their leaf color / variegation, and for how Carex improves the health of the local environment by providing food and shelter for insects and birds.
Sedge is a mostly evergreen, "ornamental grass" that adds dramatic form and specimens have either narrow or wide leaves that blend well texturally into the garden. Many sedges are US native plants and are easy-to-grow shade perennials for the woodland garden. There are over 2000 species of sedge...thus there is sure to be one for most garden situations, particularly shade/moist (many), shade/dry (some) and sun/moist (a few). Here at Plant Delights, we strive to carry a wide variety of Carex products for sale including the popular Carex brands in the Evercolor series, 'Everillo', 'Everlime', 'Eversheen', and 'Everest'.
Sedge grass is well-suited to line pathways or fill open spaces in a woodland garden. In form, carex is a perfect substitute for liriope and ophiopogon in shadier spots...but it needs a bit more consistent water than they do. Some sedges are clumpers and others spread by rhizomes. Carex foliage color varies from green, to blue, to gold/orange or variegated. Carex plants generally form arching mounds from 10 inches to more than 3 feet tall. Sedges perform great as container plants too but are less tolerant of moisture swings than other grasses...being too wet or too dry adversely affects Carex health. A few species of sedge (i.e., C. texensis, C. pennsylvanica and others) also make a decent lawn substitute.
Great companion plants to hosta, most carex perform best when grown in a moist location, although a few are drought-tolerant. Sedges are somewhat tolerant of neglect and are resistant to deer ... plus they attract butterflies. Carex improves the health of the ecosystem by producing pollen and tiny seeds that are food sources for birds and insects. And the tufted leaves are used as shelter by wildlife too.
Carex health is easy to maintain with just a few growing tips. Keep them consistently moist but in the summer when their growth slows, be sure not to over water. Water logged soils are bad for Carex health and can cause root rot. Soils that are too dry for too long cause Carex health to decline and the plants start too look ratty. If that happens, cut the sedge plant back, resume watering and the health and appearance will improve.
If you want to buy ornamental grass for a shady site then you should buy sedge instead.
Check out our short article entitled : Carex - Fine Textural Sedges for the Perennial Shade Garden.