* Botanical name: Panicum virgatum ‘Northwind’
* What it is: A native ornamental grass that’s one of the best at staying upright, even after rainy windstorms. Blades are wider than most grasses and a steely-blue in color, turning golden-yellow in fall. Dainty pinkish seedheads form atop flower plumes in late summer.
* Size: 5 feet tall (with plumes), 3 feet across.
* Where to use: As sentry plants on either side of a sunny door, gate or entryway. Also can be used as a loose hedge, clustered on sunny banks or spotted as an upright texture plant in any sunny border or perennial garden. Full sun to light shade.
* Care: Cut to a stub in March (or any time over winter). Once established, no water or fertilizer needed. If clumps spread where you don’t want them, dig up and divide… fist-sized pieces transplant easily. Tolerates fairly damp areas as well as dry ones.
* Great partner: Sedum ‘Neon,’ ‘Brilliant’ or ‘Autumn Joy.’