San Marcos GrowersSan Marcos Growers
New User?
Wholesale Login
Enter Password
Home Products Purchase Gardens About Us Resources Contact Us
Search Utilities
Plant Database
Search by Plant Name
Advanced Search
Search by size, origins,
color, cultural needs, etc.
Website Search
Search for any word
Site Map
Retail Locator
Plant Listings



 Weather Station

Products > Austrostipa ramosissima
Austrostipa ramosissima - Pillar of Smoke

Note: This plant is not currently for sale. This is an archive page preserved for informational use.  

Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Grass
Family: Poaceae (Gramineae) (Grasses)
Origin: Australia (Australasia)
Flower Color: Cream
Bloomtime: Year-round
Synonyms: [Stipa ramosissima]
Height: 4-6 feet
Width: 3-4 feet
Exposure: Full Sun
Seaside: Yes
Irrigation (H2O Info): Medium Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 15-20 F
Austrostipa ramosissima (Pillar of Smoke) - This tall-growing cool-season evergreen grass has a columnar growth habit to 6 feet tall with bright green foliage and showy flowers that bloom along the inflorescence in such a way that the illusion of a pillar of smoke is created. The flowers in branched panicles 6 to 8 inches long appear continuously in cultivation and emerge a silky bronze color, aging first to cream and finally to gray. It is heat and drought tolerant although plants look better with occasional irrigation. It is evergreen in mild climates, and is reported by John Greenlee as having withstood 18 degrees F without damage. Its hardiness in colder climates is unknown. It tolerates wind and coastal conditions. John Greenlee says "Pillar of smoke is a stunning addition to the American nursery trade that has caused a sensation on the California horticultural scene sure to ripple across the country." Rick Darke says "this grass blooms nearly continuously in cultivation, producing a dense, towering mass of fine-textured inflorescences." Nevin Smith says "Open sprays of small, pendant spikelets grace the plant in late summer and fall. ... A very beautiful grass."  The information on this webpage is based on research conducted about this plant in our nursery library, from online sources, as well as from observations made of it as it grows in the nursery in containers, in the nursery's garden and in other gardens where we have observed it growing. We will also incorporate comments received from others and welcome getting feedback from those who may have additional information, particularly if this information includes cultural information that would aid others in growing  Austrostipa ramosissima.