Japanese Forest Grass (Hakonechloa macra 'Aureola')
From the moment this grass begins to show in spring, the very Gold that Rob't Frost celebrates, this plant has a strong prescence in my garden.
It's a supporting role everywhere it's planted, and gives an Oscar worthy performance. Here it is, on stage with Peachleaf Bellflower (Campanula persicifolia) and Balloon Flower (Platycodon grandiflorum.)
A slightly different angle in summer, with an unnamed daylily cultivar (hemerocallis) and one of the perennial phlox (Phlox paniculata hybrid.)
In late summer, it throws delicate sprays of ruby tinted seeds, almost lost in the blades which also begin to blush pink.
For winter it maintains a tidy form, holding up to Michigan's random snowfalls until I cut it back in spring.
A plant with a strong stance, perfectly complimentary to the showier bloomers, is always a welcome addition to my borders.
Its one drawback, perhaps, is that it prefers a semi-shady spot. Here it is located on the east side of my house off the drive, where it gets all morning sun and then reflected light in the afternoon. In the muggy midwest it doesn't demand a lot of additional water, the hose you see is to quench the thirst of my many patio plantings. An overall winner, and a favorite in my garden.
And yes, picking one plant? Devilishly hard. This one won for its all-season interest, and the way it brings a smile to my face every time I pass.
My dogs like it too. It's grass, right? They can't understand why I won't let them eat it!