Plants are unique. Each plant grows in a different morphology. Several plants may even grow in the human body parts-like form or animal-like form, while others grow like part of the animal itself, which is the feather.
Whether you’re planning to go with the natural, Japanese, cottage, desert, wildlife, or even gothic style of gardening, the ‘soft’ and feather-quill-like appearance of these flowers can add more character to your lovely garden!
In this article, we will guide you to identify which flowers that look like feathers and a handful of tips on how to take care of them.
How to identify plants that look like feathers?
When talking about plants that look like feathers, one of the most well-known species is probably white feather pampas grass or Cortaderia selloana. We will use this plant as our ‘ guidebook’ to help us identify plants in the same niche.
One of the most striking characteristics, no doubt, is the shape of the flowers’ heads which resemble feathers. They’re not heavy, for instance, on average pampas grass only weighs about 2.74 to 4 grams.
Generally, this type of plant grows above 2 meters or 6 feet tall and is mainly used as a decorative plant for landscaping. Some are just white or brownish-white, while some are ranging in color. They’re not strictly perennial or annual, depending on the species, with mainly fibrous root systems.
What are the benefits of flowers that look like bird feathers?
Do you know that these feather-like flowers are not only useful for decorative purposes? They can be a good home and hiding place for small mammals, butterflies, songbirds, and pollinators. So if you’re planning to attract more pollinators, these flowers can be one of the best choices.
Besides enriching your garden ecosystem, these plants are also good at stabilizing stream banks from erosion. However, please take note to not plant them near buildings since it can cause fire when the flowers die and become dry. To prevent this, you can immediately cut the withering, dry, and old parts of the plants.
List of 10 flowers that look like feathers.
Are you ready to be your neighbor’s envy? With a list of these feather-like flowers, you can even transform your garden or favorite place into a magical world!
1. Bluestem or Broomsedge (Andropogon glomeratus)
The first plant in our flowers that looks like feathers is Bluestem or Broomsedge.
Bluestem is a part of the Poaceae family and is native to America. This warm season plant’s height averages from 2 to 6 feet, with silvery pink and white feathery flower heads when they bloom around September to January.
They’re low maintenance, easy to grow in moist and fertile soils, require full sun, and with no serious pests or disease problems. Bluestem can’t stand to dry out soils so make sure to always make the soil moist.
2. Hardy Pampas Grass or Mvenra Grass (Tripidium ravennae)
The next plants that look like feathers are Hardy Pampas Grass or Mvenra Grass.
You can use hardy pampas grass as an alternative for white feather pampas grass when the season is colder. As a marvelous addition to your garden, hardy pampas grass is easy and fast to grow, only needs a moderate amount of water, and they change color depending on what season.
During mid-summer, hardy pampas grass’ flower heads are white, while during autumn, their leaves turn from bronze into the red. They can reach up to 12 feet tall when mature.
3. Giant Reed (Arundo donax)
A native to Eastern Asia, do you know that the tubelike stems of the giant reed have been used to make woodwind instruments? Giant reed leaves can also be used to make baskets, fishing rods, and mats. They’re quite massive, with a height of about 1.8 to 7 meters or 6 to 23 feet, and spread through underground stems. Giant reed requires little investment when planted.
4. Chinese Silver Grass (Miscanthus sinensis)
The fourth flowers that look like feathers are Chinese silver grass. This exotic flowering plant is an ideal addition to your garden. Chinese silver grass grows up to 3.7 meters or 12 feet and has silvery pink flowers that can make the illusion of glowing when they face the warm summer heat for blooming. But be cautious since Chinese silver grass is extremely inflammable.
5. Diamond Grass or Foxtail Grass (Calamagrostis brachytricha)
Another perennial ornamental grass, the best time to plant diamond grass is during late summer to early fall. They have brownish-white flower plumes when in fall and white with a hint of golden bronze color in fall and winter. The height can reach up to 4 feet or 120 centimeters and don’t need much (only average) water,
6. Blazing Stars or Spike Gay Feathers (Liatris spicata)
Most people probably never heard about this beautiful lavender-purple-colored flower. The blazing star is a decorative plant from North America. No matter if you’re a beginner or an experienced gardener, it’s never too late to plant blazing stars since they’re easy to grow and propagate!
Even though the harsh prairie environment is their natural habitat, you should have to water them weekly until the strong root system is settled.
7. Japanese Sago Palm (Cycas revoluta)
Have you ever seen a quill-feather pen? If so, now you can picture what Japanese sago palm leaves look like. But unlike the previous plant, we have listed before, the Japanese sago palm is a slow-growing subtropical plant, and may take up to 50 years to grow! Isn’t that incredible? They’re widely used for ornamental plants and are relatively easy to grow and maintain.
8. Feather Reed Grass (Calamagrostis x acutiflora)
Feather reed grass is a color-changing plant. From the stems to appearing at blooming time, feather reed grass may change color from green, dark maroon, bronze, and finally to golden tan when they mature. They’re drought-resistant, require moist soil, and are easy to take care of.
9. Cathedral Windows (Calathea makoyana)
Also known as the peacock plant, cathedral windows have an eccentric appearance of a peacock’s feather pattern. They’re non-toxic and easy to maintain, but prefer a darker, warm, and humid place to grow since cathedral windows are rainforest plants. They grow up to 4 feet in one year and then will stop growing after reaching their full height.
10. Mexican Feather Grass (Nassella tenuissima)
You can plant Mexican feather grass not only in your garden but also in pots and planters. They have lime-green leaves and golden-white flower heads, and unlike the other plants that make it to the list, they prefer dry soil and the growth will stunt if you plant them in a wet, moist area. After blooming, this Mexico and Argentina native plant is about 2 feet tall.
To conclude, most plants that look like feathers are not difficult to maintain and surely can add more charm to your garden. The only thing you need to take an eye on is how inflammable most of these plants are. So be careful and happy gardening!