The blue fescue or Festuca glauca is a decorative plant that is particularly attractive due to its blue-green color. Coming from mountainous regions, it is not only an area-wide eye-catcher in rock gardens or pots, it is also undemanding. Neither watering nor fertilizing is necessary and other measures are also limited. So it can hardly be easier to care for than the blue fescue. Nevertheless, things can go wrong in cultivation, because Festuca glauca is sensitive to many things that are good for other plants. For successful care, the small albeit special needs of the blue fescue must be known.


The blue fescue comes from rocky areas where it gets a lot of sun and is dry. He would also like that in the bucket or bed. A location with consistently blazing sun can be chosen here. While Festuca glauca does not die directly in light shade, it tends to lose its attractive blue-green color.

These preferences make the grass ideal for rock gardens. But the evergreen plant is also suitable as a border for beds and paths, because it grows densely – but does not form any runners.


Less is more – this is especially true with the blue fescue. It prefers barren, dry and loose soil with a high lime content but low nutrient content. A stony or sandy soil that allows water to drain well is ideal. If Festuca glauca is to be in an area with high groundwater or next to the garden pond, a drainage layer must be used.

If the soil is too rich or tends to compact, the decorative grass often acknowledges this condition with diseases. Loamy substrates, soil with a large humus content or freshly fertilized areas are therefore extremely unfavorable.

Note: The blue fescue is susceptible to fungal infections, a layer of sand on the ground has a preventive effect.


The blue fescue is best planted outdoors in late spring, when frost is no longer to be expected. Although the plant is resistant to small drops in temperature, it only does so with increasing age.

If you want Festuca glauca to cover your garden as much as possible, you should plant up to 12 plants per square meter, depending on the exact variety. In addition to the right substrate and location, a sufficient distance to other plants is important here. 30 to 40 cm should be maintained, but the exact distance depends on the selected variety and the associated space requirement. If the blue fescue is too dense and lacks the appropriate ventilation, the risk of fungal infections is enormously increased. So at the beginning you have to show some courage to leave gaps, even if it should lead to a comprehensive result.

Culture in the bucket

As a container plant, the blue fescue can be outdoors earlier, but must be brought back indoors when there is frost. In addition to this initial protective measure, a drainage layer about five centimeters high at the bottom of the container makes sense. This ensures that the water runs off even in heavy rain and aerates from below.

Due to the low nutrient and water requirements, the care of the grass is not increased even in the planter. However, safe hibernation is also facilitated in regions with very low temperatures.

watering and fertilizing

The blue fescue can be planted freely in the garden or in the open air in a tub without additional watering even in periods with little rain.
Only in the case of very long, dry phases or a covered location do you have to reach for the watering can from time to time. Then it can also be hard tap water, because the high lime content does not bother the grass. On the contrary, just as in the soil, the lime promotes growth.

However, you should not water the plant from above, as this quickly leads to mold and rot. It is better to place the sparing watering in small sips between the plants.

Note: The blue fescue shows a particularly intense coloring when it is dry, so fading is not a sign of a lack of water.

The blue fescue is not fertilized at all, because it consumes only a very small amount of nutrients. Only after several years in the same location and after a radical pruning does it make sense to carry out very gentle fertilization. This is particularly useful when cultivating in a tub and is an alternative to transplanting or repotting.

To do this, the soil is first slightly loosened up on the surface and then lightly whitewashed. Small amounts of pond water or a mineral fertilizer are also suitable. However, only in very small quantities, because Festuca glauca is quickly over-fertilized. If you want to avoid the risk of oversupply, you should rejuvenate and transplant or repot the plant instead.

Turn over and repot

A conversion is actually only necessary if the location proves to be unsuitable. In the context of rejuvenation or propagation, however, it may be advisable to change the location at the same time. Especially if, after years of cultivation in the same place, the plants show poor growth or spread diseases more frequently.

The same applies to repotting. Increasing size, the roots growing out of the container or weak growth require changing the pot. Replacing the substrate every three to five years is enough to prevent disease.


The easiest and fastest way to propagate blue fescue is to divide the plant. The measure of rejuvenation is ideal for this. Of course, you don’t have to wait until the plant wilts from the inside out. Even if you want several plants, you can dig up Festuca glauca and separate them in the middle. Again, best in late spring and after the last frost.

As an alternative to this, the blue fescue can be propagated by seeds. These are both commercially available and can be obtained from the flowers of the plant. These are removed after the flowers have faded and gently knocked out – preferably in a plastic bag – until the seeds fall out. Placed on nutrient-poor, loose soil and only slightly covered, they should initially be kept slightly moister than the adult plants. Sowing can be done directly in the garden or bucket. Pre-germination with subsequent transfer is neither useful nor necessary.


As an evergreen that keeps itself in shape, blue fescue rarely needs pruning. The intervention is only worthwhile if a large number of the stalks have turned yellow or brown. It is then advisable to radically cut the plant back to just above the ground in early spring. The appearance of the planting is only briefly disturbed by the subsequent sprouting.

Under no circumstances should the measure be taken in the fall. This only weakens the Festuca glauca unnecessarily and also increases the risk of rotting between the stalks.

If you want to increase the intensity of the blue-green color, you can also remove the inflorescences shortly after they have faded.


If the blue fescue has gotten old, it shows this by balding or browning in the middle. There are real holes. If this occurs, the entire growth does not have to be removed and disposed of immediately. Instead, a rejuvenation is pending.
For this purpose, Festuca glauca is dug up and divided down the middle. The optically unappealing areas are simply cut off. The resulting halves are then replanted. The plants sprout again and are rejuvenated in terms of strength and appearance.
The best time for regeneration is late spring. Then the blue fescue has enough time to grow again until winter.


As an evergreen plant, the blue fescue is hardy. However, the respective maximum temperature depends on the exact breeding form. However, light frosts endure everyone, especially with age. If the Festuca glauca is still very young or if a long, hard winter is imminent, special protection is worthwhile. However, this must not completely darken the plant or encourage water accumulation between the stalks. The accumulation of leaves is well suited, which also naturally but slightly fertilizes the soil. The use of straw and brushwood is also effective.
In regions with persistent temperatures below -12 °C, it can be problematic for the blue fescue to spend the winter outdoors, despite the protective layer that has been applied. Here the bucket culture is recommended.

Cultivated in tubs, blue fescue should be brought indoors during the winter. Here it is kept frost-free and bright. The substrate should only be kept from completely drying out. Casting is done sparingly at large intervals and with small quantities.

Typical care mistakes, diseases and pests

In its rocky and dry homeland, the blue fescue is rarely attacked by disease. There are no pests on it at all. It is different in the garden or bucket, where the wrong care leads to a high tendency to fungal infections. Common are:

A treatment of the respective infection is extremely difficult due to the shape of the Festuca glauca. In addition, the spores and other pathogens spread quickly in plants. If rust-colored spots or white to gray deposits appear, the affected plant should be removed and destroyed immediately. It must not land on the compost. This radical approach is usually a quick fix and prevents larger infestations. Treatment with the necessary fungicides is no longer necessary, which is good for your health, your wallet and the environment.

All diseases can be prevented with the right care. The already mentioned, lean and dry soil is important. A loose, rocky substrate that does not tend to compaction is essential. As well as watering from below and adequate ventilation. If diseases show up again and again, a new location should be chosen with appropriate factors. It is also advisable to use fresh soil and spread a layer of sand or gravel on the substrate. This ensures a dry layer and distance to the substrate. Fungi then have a harder time spreading. An airy location and plenty of space to the neighbors in the bed also have a preventive effect.


Blue fescue can be poisonous to cats, rabbits and other pets, as well as humans. Care should therefore be taken to ensure that Festuca glauca is not ingested orally. Especially for four-legged friends, the grass in the garden is quite tempting – usually when there are no alternatives. So caution or a waiver of the plant is required here.

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