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Plant Answer Line Question
I live in a community on Camano Island. We have some communal beach front property and would like to plant some native beach grasses that are about one foot high. What species do we have to choose from and where can we purchase them?
I found a list of native Northwest beach grasses in an online symposium moderated by Alfred Wiedemann of Evergreen State College in Olympia. (The symposium was about an invasive species, Ammophila arenaria, or European beach grass, which has been crowding out native species.) Here are some of the plants he mentioned:
Elymus (Leymus) mollis (Dunegrass)
Convolvulus (Calystegia) soldanella
Here is a Seattle Times article from May 1, 2005 about beach plants by Valerie Easton that may be of interest to you. The Miller Library has the book that is mentioned in the article, Native Plants in the Coastal Garden by April Pettinger (Timber Press, rev. and updated, 2002), and it includes a list of native grasses. These two grasses were specifically recommended for beachside gardens:
Elymus or Leymus mollis (also listed above)
Festuca rubra (Red fescue)
Washington Native Plant Society might also be a good resource for you. They provide a list of nurseries in our area which specialize in native plants. King County's Native Plant Guide also has a list of sources.
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April 11 2017 13:50:16