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Deschampsia flexuosa

Wavy Hairgrass /

This showy, fine-textured, evergreen grass is excellent in shady gardens or woodland settings. A cool season grower, wavy hairgrass forms a tight clump of narrow, wiry foliage. In late spring, stems shoot up above the foliage and arch gracefully with frothy-looking flowers. Clumping grasses like this provide nest sites and winter cover for quail and sparrows. They also provide fall and winter seeds for a number of birds including cardinals, towhees, juncos, sparrows, finches, goldfinches, redpolls and snow buntings.


  • Will grow in dry shade
  • Provides nest sites, protective cover and food for birds
  • Offers protective cover for small mammals
  • Good winter interest; very winter hardy
  • Use flowers in fresh or dried arrangements

Homeowner Growing and Maintenance Tips

Grows easily in partial shade to full shade. Plant in average to dry soil. Leave foliage in place for winter interest and to provide cover for wildlife. Cut back to the ground in early spring before new growth begins. Plants will self-sow but are not invasive.

8-12 Inches


12-18 Inches

USDA Hardiness Zone 3-8

Native Range

Dry woods, highlands and shorelines; Maine to Michigan south to Ohio and Pennsylvania and in the mountains to Georgia.

Native Trivia

Diversifying your shady areas by planting a mix of shrubs, vines, grasses and flowers will provide the best type of habitat for wildlife and will give you a visually interesting landscape year round.

"This grass will add interest to your garden while providing shelter for chipmunks like me and my songbird friends."

Characteristics & Attributes

Plan Sub Group
  • Low Grasses
  • Medium Perennials
  • Filtered Shade
  • Sun
  • Well-drained
  • Wide soil tolerance
Soil Moisture Preference
  • Average
  • Dry
Attracts Wildlife
  • Mammals
  • Songbirds
Bloom Time
  • Late Spring / Early Summer
Habitat Collection
  • Dry Shade
  • Songbird
Native Habitat
  • Grassland
Foliage Color
  • Green
  • Cut or dried flower
  • Drought tolerant
  • Evergreen
  • Mass plant
  • Meadow
  • Naturalizes
Native to
  • Alabama
  • Alaska
  • Arizona
  • Connecticut
  • Delaware
  • District of Columbia
  • Georgia
  • Kansas
  • Maine
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan
  • Minnesota
  • New Hampshire
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • North Carolina
  • North Dakota
  • Ohio
  • Oklahoma
  • Pennsylvania
  • Rhode Island
  • South Carolina
  • Tennessee
  • Vermont
  • Virginia
  • West Virginia
  • Wisconsin