Northern See River Oats Ornamental Grass Plant Seeds

Northern Sea Oats

Grass Specifications

Season: Perennial

USDA Zones: 3 - 8

Height: 24 - 60 inches

Width: 12 - 30 inches

Flower Color: Green

Soil Requirement: Medium to wet well drained soil

Environment: Full sun to deep shade

Deer Resistant: Yes

Moisture Requirements: Prefers wet soils

Latin Name: Chasmanthium latifolium

Planting Directions

Temperature: 73F

Average Germ Time: 14 days

Light Required: Yes

Depth: Surface sow and press seed into soil

Sowing Rate: 2 - 3 seeds per plant

Moisture: Keep seeds moist until germination

Plant Spacing: 12 - 30 inches

Northern Sea Oats (Chasmanthium latifolium) - The plant with many names as it is also called: Inland Sea Oats, Indian Wood Oats, Wild Oats, River Oats, Flathead Oats, Upland Oats, and Upland Sea Oats. Whatever name you choose, it is a clump-forming, upright, ornamental grass, usually growing 2 - 5 feet tall and 12 - 30 inches wide. Grows best in shady conditions in moist soils often being found in woods, rocky slopes along streams, and on moist bluffs.  The hallmark of this ornamental grass is its flat, drooping seed heads which will flutter even in gentle winds. Seed heads emerge green but turn purplish bronze by late summer. Bright green leaves which are 5 - 9 inches long turn a coppery color after frost and eventually brown by winter. It passes through most of winter a soft brown, but becomes tattered and gray by February, a good time to cut it back. Excellent for dried flower arrangements. 

Provides excellent contrast and texture almost year-round to the border, shade garden, native plant garden, naturalized area, along streams or on the periphery of the water garden. Tolerant of poor soils, but prefers moist, fertile soils. One of the more shade tolerant of the ornamental grasses. Self-seeds and may spread aggressively in wet areas. It is best to leave foliage in place over winter as it adds interest to the landscape and helps protect crowns from the cold. Cut back to the ground in early spring.  It reseeds easily and can expand aggressively within a couple of years, making a solid mat in moist loams. It has been used to prevent soil erosion along streams, but also makes a great container plant.