Wednesday, 30 January 2013

Carex caryophyllea 'The Beatles'

Carex caryophyllea 'The Beatles' at Lovegrass Farm October 31

Carex caryophyllea 'The Beatles' on September 15 at Lovegrass Farm
Carex caryophyllea 'The Beatles' sends out a short runner and gradually forms a colony of mop-head foliage.  The clumps of dark green leaves give the appearance of a 1960's Beatles haircut.  It makes a hardy, deer resistant edging plant in moist areas in light shade to full shade.  It's mop like foliage swirls around on the ground below the crown and the height is only 3 - 5 inches (7 - 13 cm.)  According to Rick Darke (The Encyclopedia of Grasses for Livable Landscapes) the species caryophyllea is only hardy to Zone 7 so it is most likely a hybrid of Carex digitata and Carex ornithopoda.  Digitata is good to Zone 4; it would not have survived in our Zone 5 all these years otherwise.  Makes a great ground cover for a shady slope.  Unfortunately I don't have a photo to show you how it grows tightly together; these are of divisions made last Spring.

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