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Products > Festuca californica 'Willit's Giant'
Festuca californica 'Willit's Giant' - Giant California Fescue

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: California (U.S.A.)
California Native (Plant List): Yes
Evergreen: Yes
Flower Color: Pink
Bloomtime: Summer
Height: 2-3 feet
Width: 2-3 feet
Exposure: Sun or Shade
Summer Dry: Yes
Deer Tolerant: Yes
Irrigation (H2O Info): Low Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 0-10 F
Festuca californica 'Willit's Giant' (Giant California Fescue) - Evergreen clumping grass forms a 3 foot tall and wide mound of blue-green leaves. In summer appear the elegant flower stalks rising to 5 to 6 feet tall holding dangling spikelets of pink-tinged flowers on arching stems in an open inflorescence. Plant in full sun to light shade and irrigate occasionally, infrequently to not at all. It is tolerant of a wide variety of soil types and is drought tolerant, particularly in shade plantings but looks best with an occasional watering, particularly in dry winter rainfall years. For the coast it is evergreen and in colder areas it is considered root hardy to around 0 F and useful down to USDA Zone 8. California fescues are noted to be pretty resistant to deer predation and great for massed plantings, slope stabilization and for planting as an understory for oak trees. The species is native to Oregon and California, where is grows throughout the state with concentrations in the Coastal Ranges from Santa Barbara county north and in the Sierra and Cascade Ranges. This robust selection grows about twice the height of typical Festuca californica. It was introduced by Cal Flora Nursery in Fulton, California and was a selection they made from a nursery crop grown from seed collected near Willits in Mendocino County. We thank John Greenlee for providing us with our first plants of this great native grass. 

This information about Festuca californica 'Willit's Giant' displayed is based on research conducted in our horticultural library and from reliable online resources. We also will relate observations made about it as it grows in our nursery gardens and other gardens we have visited, as well how the crops have performed in containers in our nursery field. We will also incorporate comments that we receive from others and we welcome hearing from anyone with additional information, particularly if they can share any cultural information that would aid others in growing it.