Festuca californica is native to brushy or wooded slopes, particularly those with a north-facing exposure. Established wild stands are a beautiful sight to behold; a billowing blanket enveloping the understory of a mixed forest. It is believed that individual plants may be decades old! There are a number of named varieties that exhibit either deep green, grayish, or more bluish foliage. The blooms occur in early summer, and slowly change to a lovely golden color.
Festucas can be planted as specimens, but are most effective when planted in drifts. Use them on slopes, particularly under native oaks where they could be combined with Sword Ferns, Alum Roots or Fringecups, and Hound’s Tongue. Or plant them as groundcover under Manzanitas, pruned up to reveal their beautiful structure.
This bunchgrass is care-free and productive in a habitat garden. The seeds are large and plentiful; food for numerous creatures. The grass also provides ample nesting materials for birds, and cover for over-wintering insects.
All bunchgrasses are deer proof!