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FESTUCA rubra

Image of Festuca rubra

Forest & Kim Starr

Family

Poaceae

Botanical Name

FESTUCA rubra

Plant Common Name

Red Fescue

General Description

Red Fescue is spreading grass used for turf, meadows and in seed blends with other types of grass. It is native to Europe and North America and has naturalized over much of the cool temperate regions of the world. Red fescue is the most common cool-season turf used in dry, shady and drought prone areas. The leaves are narrow, rolled and dark green. The rhizomes or underground stems spread slowly. The green flowers are on narrow spikes in open, thin heads.

Red fescue is adapted to wide range of conditions; however it prefers well-drained, rich, organic soil and full sun to part shade. Sow red fescue seeds in the fall for best performance. Mow it high for lawns; left un-mowed, it provides a meadow appearance. Irrigate thoroughly and deeply, and not again until the turf indicates it needs it. Red fescue has poor wear tolerance and disease resistance. For more information on the establishment and maintenance of fescue lawns, visit the Lean2Grow section on lawns at http://www.learn2grow.com/gardeningguides/lawns/planting/TipsForFineFallFescue.aspx .

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    7 - 1

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    2 - 7

  • Sunset Zone

    A2, A3, 1a, 1b, 2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24

  • Plant Type

    Grass

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun, Partial Sun, Partial Shade

  • Height

    2"-10" / 5.1cm - 25.4cm

  • Bloom Time

    Early Summer, Summer, Late Summer

  • Native To

    World/Pandemic, North America, Europe

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral

  • Soil Drainage

    Average

  • Soil type

    Clay, Loam, Sand

  • Growth Rate

    Medium

  • Water Requirements

    Drought Tolerant, Average Water

  • Habit

    Mat-forming

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Insignificant

  • Flower Color

    Green

  • Fruit Color

    Tan

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Winter)

    Tan

  • Fragrant Flowers

    No

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Flower Petal Number

    Single

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    No

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    No

  • Foliage Texture

    Fine

  • Foliage Sheen

    Matte

  • Evergreen

    No

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Usage

    Edging, Groundcover, Lawns and Turf, Mixed Border, Rock Garden / Wall

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    Sometimes

  • Attracts

    Birds

  • Self-Sowing

    Yes