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Carex comans (photo courtesy of Proven Winners)
Carex comans (photo courtesy of Proven Winners)

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Zones 2B, 3-9, 14-24, 28-43
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Full, Partial
Ample WaterRegular Water
Ample, Moderate

Carex comans

New Zealand Hair Sedge
Ornamental grasses and grasslike plants


Large group of grasslike, clumping plants found worldwide and grown for foliage effect in borders, rock gardens, containers, and water gardens (flowers are generally insignificant); some are used as lawn substitutes, as large-scale groundcovers, or for erosion control. Long, narrow evergreen leaves are often striped or oddly colored. Specialists offer many varieties. Although characteristically found in damp soils, many sedges will grow under relatively dry conditions in cultivation. Many are short-lived in gardens so are used as annuals.

Carex comans

From New Zealand. Dense, fine-textured clumps reach 1–1 1/2 ft. high. Narrow, silvery green leaves are usually 1 ft. long but may reach 6 ft.; beyond a length of about 2 1/2 ft., they are utterly limp. On flat ground, foliage mounds look about 2 1/2 ft. wide; the same is true in areas where foot traffic is common, since leaves often catch on shoes of passersby and snap off. Where leaves are undisturbed on slopes or over ledges, they maintain their length and look like flowing water. Can be invasive (by self-sowing) in moist areas.

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