Fescue - Elijah Blue

Fescue - Elijah Blue

Fescue - Elijah Blue

Easily grown in average, dry to medium, well-drained soils in full sun. Tolerates light shade, but best foliage color is in full sun. Tolerant of drought and poor soils. Intolerant of wet, poorly-drained soils. Foliage is semi-evergreen. In St. Louis, the foliage may retain good color in mild winters, but clumps will show considerable browning in harsh winters. Clumps tend to die out in the center and need to be divided and replanted or replaced every 2-3 years. Cut back foliage in early spring to 3-4" to tidy clumps and to facilitate emergence of the new leaf blades. Clumps may decline in hot, humid summers, and should be cut back if such occurs. Mass densely (plant 8-10" apart) when planting as a ground cover since clumps do not spread outward very much and weeds may grow between clumps if spaced too far apart. May be grown from seed, but variations in foliage color often occur.

Festuca glauca, commonly called blue fescue, is a short-lived, low-growing, semi-evergreen, clump-forming ornamental grass noted for its glaucous, finely-textured, blue-gray foliage. Foliage forms a dome-shaped, porcupine-like tuft of erect to arching, needle-like blades radiating upward and outward to a height of 6-8" (inflorescences typically bring total clump height to 10-14"). Light green flowers with a purple tinge appear in terminal panicles atop stems rising above the foliage in late spring to early summer, but inflorescences are not very showy. Flowers give way to buffy seed heads which some gardeners find attractive but others find detractive to both the symmetry of the plant and the foliage color. 

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