Over the last couple of years, there have been few plants that totally overwhelmed me with their beauty in the garden like ‘Everillo.’ I briefly touched on this incredible sedge last winter, but now, after watching it for a second year and seeing it through a brutal summer, I know this is a must-have plant.
I have always lamented that golden Hakone grass would not work for my climate, but now I have ‘Everillo.’ Botanically speaking, ‘Everillo’ is Carex oshimensis and has the common name “Japanese sedge.” There seems to be no plant combination that is not made better by partnering with ‘Everillo.’ The nursery trade suggests it as an incredible companion with hostas and ferns. That would be a garden of staggering beauty without a doubt.
I have watched it in the cool season with pansies, red kale and iridescent pink tulips. While I thought this was the ultimate, I then saw it in late spring with compact ‘Electric Orange’ SunPatiens and in summer with tropical elephant ears and others with rusty orange coleus, sporting margins that echoed ‘Everillo’s' brilliance. All of these landscape situations were mesmerizing.
For years I have told gardeners to never underestimate the power of adding fine-leafed texture grasses to the flower border. Sedges like ‘Everillo’ give even more testimony to this concept. Thankfully, ‘Everillo’ has hit big in the market, making it easier to find. It is included in the Southern Living Plant Collection and EverColor group created by Pat Fitzgerald, the originator of the plant.
This grass has year-round effectiveness. This means you can have the year-round golden or chartreuse lantern effect throughout the landscape. Remember though, it is the protection from the midday and afternoon sun that gives ‘Everillo’ this incredible color. This is a plant for a wide region of the country, as it is cold hardy from zones 5 through 9.
If you think about the companion plants I’ve touted, from hostas and ferns, to SunPatiens and elephant ears, you realize the importance of soil preparation. Good, fertile, organic, rich soil will not only give you the green thumb, but the most dazzling ‘Everillos’ in the neighborhood.
But don’t stop with the landscape. Incorporate ‘Everillo’ into containers for the porch, patio or deck. The ‘Everillo’ will form about an 18-inch-tall mound with a dramatic weeping effect. At this size, it has the ability to be stunning as a monoculture, or stand-alone, plant. I like them in rectangular containers where, placed in the front of the pot, they weep over the edge. Taller foliage or flowers should be added to the rear. This look is exceptional for window box plantings.
‘Everillo’ will work in rock gardens, near water gardens and as the obvious, special, “look-at-me” textural plants for the flower border. I hope you will give it a try.
Follow me on Twitter @CGBGgardenguru and learn more about the CGBG at the Historic Bamboo Farm at www.coastalgeorgiabg.org.
(Norman Winter is the director of the Coastal Georgia Botanical Gardens at the Historic Bamboo Farm in Savannah, Georgia.)