Suitable grasses for the rock garden

Suitable grasses for the rock garden

Mosquito grass (Bouteloua gracilis)

This is a typical prairie grass whose gray-green, up to 30 centimeters high tufts of leaves form horizontally protruding ears. The eye-catching bloom shows up between July and August. The plant loves sunny and dry locations and is particularly comfortable on scree and in crevices. Be careful when planning the rock garden, because the mosquito grass does not tolerate lime and therefore also no calcareous stones such as tuff.

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Monte baldo sedge (Carex baldensis)

The conspicuous and very beautiful to look at Monte Baldo sedge forms up to 20 centimeters high, dark green leaf clusters. The snow-white flowers can be seen between June and July. This type of grass is best cultivated in limestone rubble and crevices and should not be too dry. A sunny location is an absolute must.

Fuchsia sedge (Carex buchananii)

This beautiful brown-red colored, up to 40 centimeters high grass grows in dense clumps with thin, upright stalks. Like other sedges, the red sedge prefers a sunny and not too dry location. It grows particularly well between rubble and in crevices, but it should not be planted on limestone. This sedge also looks very pretty when planted in troughs. In winter you should ensure good moisture protection.

Mountain sedge (Carex montana)

This delicate grass, which grows to a height of only 10 centimeters, blooms unusually early: the delicate flowers can be seen between March and April. Otherwise, the mountain sedge grows in dense leaf clusters and has slender, light green leaves. In contrast to the red sedge, the mountain sedge feels very comfortable in limestone, but also prefers to grow on scree and in crevices. Choose a sunny and not too dry location.

Blue fescue (Festuca cinerea)

The blue fescue grass, which grows up to 20 centimeters in height, is noticeable for its very thin, gray-blue colored tufts of leaves. These grow in dense clumps and also form flowers from June to July. The two rather small varieties 'Eisvogel' and 'Silbersee' are particularly recommended; if you are looking for a blue fescue that is suitable for troughs, choose 'dwarf king'. Blue fescue grass also prefers a sunny and dry location.

Bearskin Grass (Festuca gautieri)

This grass, which grows in very dense clumps, remains quite low with a maximum height of 10 centimeters and forms larger mats. Plant it between limestone rocks and choose a sunny and dry location. The 'Pic Carlit' variety is particularly compact and therefore suitable for planters.


In a rock garden, the plants have to be protected from moisture in winter. As a simple but effective protection, you can place glass or plexiglass panes on some of the stones surrounding the plants so that they do not touch the shoots themselves. A glass plate attached to an aluminum base also reliably protects against dangerous winter wetness.