Many grasses continue to add structural interest to the Garden throughout winter, including this one in the Winter Garden.
The grass family Poaceae (or Graminae) is one of the largest plant families, but is arguably the most valuable, containing the greatest number of crop plants, including rice, wheat, oats and barley. Not all members are of economic value, with many being grown for their horticultural merit. The genus Miscanthus is one such example, comprising perennial grasses from Africa and east Asia, with many being grown as valuable additions to the garden. ‘Ferner Osten’ counts among these. It is a fine selection of the species M. sinensis, forming mounds of narrow leaves from which emerge panicles of silky, purple-tinted spikelets to 1.5m. As autumn progresses these loose their colouring and take on silvery tints which catch the low winter sunlight to great effect.