Sand Cordgrass is an evergreen, large bunch-forming grass that grows to approximately three to four feet tall. Its leaves are very narrow, almost wire-like and have a fine texture. The plant is a brownish-green, leaning more towards green in the summer and more brown in the winter.
Although it is native to the edges of lakes, canals and streams, it is also found in dry, sandy soil, making it quite a versatile grass for different situations. Sand Cordgrass grows best in full sun and once established, it is considered drought tolerant. It also has a high salt tolerance. Sand Cordgrass is a fairly fast grower and will reach its full size within the first couple seasons after planting.
Sand Cordgrass is part of the of Spartina family, of which there are 15 species native to North America, Europe and Asia. It is unique from other Spartina varieties due to its brown fall flower. The flower is not very showy and its flower clusters are closely crammed together compared to other grasses with more open, feathery flower clusters.
Sand Cordgrass has recently grown in popularity among the landscape industry. It’s reliability and low maintenance needs make it an excellent choice for commercial plantings, golf courses and to define borders or provide transitions between wet and dry areas. Although stiff to the touch, it can create a soft look in the landscape.
Native to Florida & Southeast United States
Switchgrass, Marsh Grass, Cord Grass
Hardy Range: 8B – 11
Mature Height: 3 – 4’
Mature Spread: 4 – 5’
Growth Rate: moderate
Growth Habit: clumping
Sand Cordgrass forms clumps that are 18 to 20 feet in diameter and 3 to 4 feet tall. It has fine textured, wiry leaves that form a fountain spray pattern. The upper surfaces of the leaves are dark green, but the lower surfaces are light green in color. The obscure flowers of this plant may occur in the early spring but are scarce and non-showy.
Soil: extended flooding; acidic; slightly alkaline; sand; loam; clay
Exposure: full Sun