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A stand of Japanese bloodgrass backlit by the evening sun is a sight to behold. Its beautiful mid-green leaf blades appear dipped in crimson paint and remain colorful through summer and fall. While grasses typically are drought-tolerant, Japanese bloodgrass must have sufficient water to thrive. In fact, dry conditions are usually the culprit when this plant struggles.
Part Sun, Sun
1 to 3 feet
1 foot wide
more varieties for Japanese bloodgrass
Imperata cylindrica 'Rubra' makes loose, upright 18-inch-tall clumps of mid-green leaves tipped with crimson red. In late summer, white flower spikelets develop. Zones 5-9
plant Japanese bloodgrass with
Tall and elegant, these ferns look great during the spring and summer months thanks to their green fronds, but also in fall and winter when their upright reproductive fronds stand in the snow. They are excellent in damp soils and look especially at home beside ponds and streams. They may colonize large areas.
Colorful lobelias are a wonderful choice for landscaping around ponds and streams -- anywhere the soil is consistently moist. In fact, lobelia even loves downright wet conditions, making it a top choice for bog gardens.Perennial type of lobelia (not to be confused with the low-growing, often blue annual types) are magnets for hummingbirds, so they're great for wildlife gardens. The foliage is a handsome rich green to sometimes dark reddish purple. The plant produces striking spikes of flowers in all shades of red, pink, blue, and white. Lobelia needs humus-rich soil. Mulch with a biodegradable material, such as wood bark or chopped leaves, to add humus to the soil.
Daylilies are so easy to grow you'll often find them growing in ditches and fields, escapees from gardens. And yet they look so delicate, producing glorious trumpet-shape blooms in myriad colors. In fact, there are some 50,000 named hybrid cultivars in a range of flower sizes (the minis are very popular), forms, and plant heights. Some are fragrant.The flowers are borne on leafless stems. Although each bloom lasts but a single day, superior cultivars carry numerous buds on each scape so bloom time is long, especially if you deadhead daily. The strappy foliage may be evergreen or deciduous.Shown above: 'Little Grapette' daylily