plant profile blue zinger carex sedge

Plant Profile: ‘Blue Zinger’ Sedge

With our busy lives, our landscapes and gardens often end up the last task on our giant to-do lists.  This makes finding the absolutely toughest yet easiest to grow plant a high priority for most homeowners.  This plant, most certainly, falls into both of those categories.

 


Are you interested in an easy to grow plant that involves very limited maintenance and still looks beautiful?  I have the perfect plant for you!  Sedge.

I have unintentionally abused and neglected mine right from the start.  Yet, this incredible wonder still keeps on performing well and growing beautifully.

After planting this sedge in July and forgetting to water for over a month, these plants grew!  And flourished!  And, well, they looked a touch tired for a while.  But really, after what I put them through, who could blame them?

blue zinger carex grass-like sedge with blue green foliage planted in landscape with blue hosta

What is this sedge that has survived and thrived, when pretty much any other plant would have called it kaput within that first, hot July day?

‘Blue Zinger’ Carex (Sedge)

Definitely not the much-loathed Nutsedge.  Although one can’t deny its tenacious will to live.

No.  This sedge is what’s considered to be the “true sedge”.  A carex.  The one plant that every busy homeowner should allow to grace their landscape.

blue zinger carex a blue-green grass-like sedge planted in landscape

What are Sedge and Carex?

Belonging to the large family Cyperaceae, there are approximately 5,500 species of sedge with more than 200 in Missouri.  One species of sedge was even used by the ancient Egyptians to make papyrus paper.

Carex is a genus of sedge that has more than 2,000 species.  The Carex genus is considered to be “true sedge”.

What is the difference between a Sedge and Grass?

Grass belongs to the family Poaceae and, while a sedge is certainly grass-like, the difference ends there.  A sedge has solid, triangular stems whereas Grasses have hollow stems.

grey-blue grass-like foliage of blue zinger sedge planted in landscape bed of blue hosta and blue wonder catmint

Where can I plant ‘Blue Zinger’ Sedge?

While ‘Blue Zinger’ is bright enough to stand alone, the foliage color and texture also make it a phenomenal accent plant.  It offers a sense of elegance yet lends itself to a more contemporary feeling.  ‘Blue Zinger’ is wonderfully versatile.

The brilliant, blue-green foliage of ‘Blue Zinger’ completely leaps out of a landscape.  The burst of color and texture this sedge offers is a reminder that, while flowers are much wanted, they are most definitely not needed.

blue zinger carex planted in landscape bed surrounded by oversized iowa rainbow gravel and a pennsylvania bluestone patio and walkway

About ‘Blue Zinger’ Carex

This sedge is mainly clump forming but will spread very slowly by rhizomes allowing it to work well planted in masses to stabilize the soil.  It is somewhat more upright than the species and would make an exceptional substitution to the less water-tolerant Blue Fescue.

From sun to shade, wet soil to dry soil, there is absolutely no area that this plant can’t thrive.  This remarkably adaptable carex is a low maintenance sedge which requires only to be cut back in late winter before the new foliage arrives.  If necessary, it can be divided in spring.

blue zinger carex a blue-green grass-like sedge planted in landscape

No flowers are required where this sedge is concerned.  The versatility, ease of growing, and intense foliage color will brighten any landscape and bring some much-needed simplicity into your busy lives!

Carex flacca 'Blue Zinger'

Zone:  5-9
Height:  1′ to 1.5′
Spread:  1′ to 1.5′
Bloom Time:  July – August
Bloom Description:  Greenish-white/Insignificant
Light Requirements:  Part Shade to Full Shade is ideal
Water:  Medium to wet, can tolerate drought once established.
Maintenance:  Low.  Cut back foliage in late winter
before new growth arrives.
Features:  Tolerates deer and heavy shade.
Spreads slowly by rhizomes and helps to stabilize soils.