11 Best Ornamental Grasses for Your Garden

This steel-blue grass is a more compact variety that looks great planted in groups of three to five plants. Make sure to keep it at the front of mixed borders because it tops out around a foot tall.

Blue Fescue

Feathery spikes, which last into winter, top off this plant to make it quite eye-catching. It’s extremely easy-care and comes in several different cultivars, or cultivated varieties.

Feather Reed Grass

This warm season grass develops pretty flowers that turn into attractive seed heads by fall. It’s a visually striking plant featured by itself in pots, beds, or paired with other annuals or perennials in containers.

Purple Millet

This adorable grass has tiny, fluffy flowers on the tips of stems, making it appear like a fiber optic light! It’s about a foot tall and is considered an annual in much of the country but can be brought indoors to enjoy as a houseplant, too.

Fiber Optic Grass

Fountain grass makes a beautiful focal point with its brushy flowers that emerge in fall. Some types such as ‘Desert Plains’ are perennial, while others, such as ‘Rubrum’ are treated as annuals. Most get 3 to 4 feet tall so they’re great for creating privacy or in mixed borders.

Fountain Grass

Maiden grass has a lovely texture with silvery plumes that last throughout the fall and winter. It’s available in many different types, but look for a named variety, such as ‘Gracillimus,’ which is not invasive.

Maiden Grass

This attractive grass, which typically reaches about 18 inches max, has arching leaves that may be solid green or variegated with gold. It’s one of the few ornamental grasses that tolerates some shade.

Japanese Forest Grass

This grass reaches about 3 to 4 feet tall, so it’s ideal in borders. Its beautiful pinkish-red plumes have an ethereal presence in the garden, making it a must-have for mild climates.

Pink Muhly Grass

Arching leaves that turn red in late summer to fall make this grass an attractive addition to garden beds. It's a good choice for large containers, topping out around 3 feet tall.

Switch Grass

This low-growing clumping grass makes a spectacular groundcover when planted in masses. It comes in shades ranging from pale green to dark burgundy.

Mondo Grass

There are many different types of sedge, but this clump-forming grass is most attractive when planted in groups. Its arching leaves are available in pretty gold, green, or variegated types.