Carex elata 'Bowles Golden'

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Photo Courtesy of Walters Gardens, Inc.
 Common Name: Grass-Ornamental
Common Name (Alternative): Sedge-Gold

This sedge has bright gold foliage with thin green margins and is taller than most other sedges. It is an excellent choice as a highlight plant for a shade or water garden. 'Bowles Golden' is a moisture loving grass that needs to be constantly wet or moist to thrive. It will grow in shallow water and looks great around a pond with blue hostas.

Origin: Not Native to North America


  2-3 Feet
  2-3 Feet
Foliage Color:
Hardiness Zone:
Find Your Zone
Sun or Shade?:
  Part shade (4-6 hrs. direct sun)
Wet or dry?:
  Consistent water needs
Need critter resistant plants?:
  Deer resistant
How fast should it grow?:
When should it bloom?:
  Grown for its attractive foliage
How's your soil?:
  Average Soil
  Fertile Soil
Sweet or Sour Soil?:
  Acidic Soil (pH < 7.0)
  Neutral Soil (pH = 7.0)
What's your garden style?:
  Rain Garden
  Water Garden


Bog plant
Border plants
Mass Planting
Specimen or focal point


  Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit 1993

Homeowner Growing & Maintenance Tips:

'Bowles Golden' is semi-evergreen and performs best in moist, rich, acidic soil with a half day of sun. This variety does not do well in full shade. It can be grown in shallow water 2-3 in. deep.

This plant is officially listed as hardy to zone 5, but has been known to overwinter in zone 4 with winter protection.  In northern climates, it should be sited out of the way of winter winds and provided with some protection such as snow or straw.

If plants look tattered in early spring, cut them back to the ground. The new foliage will quickly fill back in.


Common/Botanical Name
Astilbe 'Fanal'
Common Name: Astilbe-Hybrid
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Athyrium felix-forma 'Lady in Red'
Common Name: Fern-Lady
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Hosta 'Blue Angel'
Common Name: Hosta
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Heuchera 'Obsidian' PP14836 COPF
Common Name: Coral Bells
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Tiarella 'Sugar and Spice' PP16738 COPF
Common Name: Foamflower
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Hosta 'Blueberry Muffin'
Common Name: Hosta
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Ajuga reptans 'Black Scallop' PP15815 COPF
Common Name: Bugleweed
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While every effort has been made to describe this plant accurately, please keep in mind that the height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates throughout the country. The description of this plant was written based on our experience growing it in Michigan (USDA hardiness zone 5) and on numerous outside resources.