Sesleria autumnalis
Common Name: autumn moor grass 
Type: Ornamental grass
Family: Poaceae
Native Range: Southeastern Europe
Zone: 5 to 8
Height: 0.75 to 1.00 feet
Spread: 0.50 to 1.00 feet
Bloom Time: September to October
Bloom Description: Greenish
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Low
Flower: Insignificant
Tolerate: Drought, Erosion, Dry Soil, Black Walnut, Air Pollution

Culture

Easily grown in average, dry to medium, well-drained soil in full sun to part shade. Tolerates a wide range of soils and drought. Somewhat intolerant of high summer heat and humidity. Cut clumps back to the ground in late winter.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Sesleria autumnalis, commonly called autumn moor grass, is a cool season, clump-forming ornamental grass which typically grows 8-12" tall with narrow flower spikes rising above the foliage clump in summer to 18" tall. Flowers give way in autumn to silvery-white inflorescences. Attractive, narrow, yellow-green foliage (to 3/16" wide). This grass is indigenous to the moors of Europe and puts on its best flowering display in autumn, hence the common name.

Genus name honors Leonardo Sesler (d. 1785), doctor at Venice, who had a private botanic garden there.

Specific epithet means autumn.

Problems

No serious insect or disease problems. This grass did not do well at the Kemper Center in the hot and humid St. Louis summers.

Garden Uses

Mass under trees or in full sun as a ground cover. Best planted in large sweeps in informal areas rather than borders because the ornamental qualities of this grass are somewhat minimal.