Calamagrostis x acutiflora ‘Karl Foerster’

feather reed-grass

(3 customer reviews)


One of the most valuable ornamental grasses, Calamagrostis x acutiflora ‘Karl Foerster’ has been a best seller since its introduction in the 1950s.

It’s an all year round attractive plant bearing feathery plumes in summer, making it a focal point in the garden.


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Origin: continental Europe and Asia
Genus: Calamagrostis
Species / Cultivar: C. arundinacea x epicejos var. 'Karl Foerster'
Common Name: feather reed-grass
Synonym: Calamagrostis stricta

Plant Biography

One of the most valuable ornamental grasses, Calamagrostis x acutiflora ‘Karl Foerster’ has been a best seller since its introduction in the 1950s.

It is a hardy, drought-tolerant, easy-care plant with a wonderful vertical form that waves and sways delightfully in the slightest breeze.

Loose, feathery, greenish-yellow flower heads are produced in summer that age to golden yellow and remain in good shape through autumn and winter extending the seasonal interest. Best growth is achieved on rich, moisture-retentive soils.

Calamagrostis x acutiflora 'Karl Foerster'
Soil: Well drained
Soil that does not show much signs of moisture, either visibly or when handled.
Growth Rate: Fast
Expect to see prolific growth, especially during growing season.
Water Requirement: Medium
Once it is established, this plant is likely to only require watering during drier periods.
Maintenance: Low
Minimal skill or input needed beyond the basics, a very independent plant.
Situation: Full Sun to Part Shade
Enjoys direct sun most of the day, but tolerant of fewer sunlit hours or light dappling.
Eventual Height: 1.5 m
The plant's ultimate height in typical growing conditions.
Eventual Spread: 1m
The plant's ultimate spread in typical growing conditions.
Hardiness: Hardy
Survives unprotected in an average winter. May need protection in extreme long frosts.
Lifecycle: Perennial
This plant is persistant and does not die off after flowering. It will return each season indefinitely, if provided with suitable growing conditions.
Care & Size Guidance

Care & Size Guidance

Plant in early spring to allow it to establish. Once established, the Calamagrostis x actutiflora ‘Karl Foerster’ does not require any special care and will form dense clumps. it can be used as an architectural plant or to form a soft, yet dramatic screen.

Cut back in spring to about 6-7 inches to allow new growth to come through.

Although not required, an early spring application of a slow release fertiliser will encourage vigorous growth through the growing season.

3 customer reviews for Calamagrostis x acutiflora ‘Karl Foerster’

Great healthy plants, well packaged and delivered well watered.


Fast delivery of good plants, still damp on arrival. Are thriving.

Emma Tavner

Very nice healthy plant, arrived quick, came in very spacious box. Replant it a week ago – seems slowly growing good. Thank you! Definitely will visit your centre soon.

Anna Tiffin