Festuca rubra

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Festuca rubra lawn
Festuca rubra
Festuca rubra

Species Name: Festuca rubra
Common Name: Creeping red fescue

A beautiful lush green grass for shady spots where most turf grasses will not grow. It can handle more sun along the coast, less inland. Red fescue forms tufts that spread outward by rhizomes, making it a good lawn substitute.

Plant Family: Poaceae
Plant Type: Grass (cool season)
Height by Width: 1-2' H x spreading
Growth Habit: Tufted, spreading
Deciduous/Evergreen: Summer dormant
Growth Rate: Fast
Sun Exposure: Full sun to shade
Soil Preference: Adaptable
Water Requirements: Moderate to regular
Cold Hardy to: 7500'
Flower Season:
Flower Color:
Endangered?: Not Listed
Distribution: North West, Cascade Ranges, northern and central Sierra Nevada, Central West, Transverse Ranges
Natural Habitat: Sand dunes, grassland, subalpine forest, generally below 7500'

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Care and Maintenance


Other Names
  • Bornstein, Carol, David Fross, and Bart O'Brien. California Native Plants for the Garden. Los Olivos, CA: Cachuma Press. 2005.
  • Harlow, Nora and Kristin Jakob. Wild Lilies, Irises, and Grasses: Gardening with California Monocots. Berkely and Los Angeles, CA: University of California Press. 2003.