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Variegated Sweet Flag - Acorus calamus Variegatus

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Variegated Sweet Flag
Acorus gramineus 'Variegatus' 

USDA Plant Hardiness Zones: 5b-9b  Find Your Zone

Note:  For our customers who live and garden north of USDA Plant Hardiness Zone 5a, where this Sweet Flag variety is not reliably winter hardy, you'll be happy to know it can be grown in containers that can be brought indoors during winter and placed back outside when temperatures warm up in spring.

Special Attributes

Variegated Sweet Flag, Acorus gramineus 'Variegatus', is a neat looking, maintenance-free plant with thin green blades striped in white that fan upwards to form grass-like tufts about 12 inches tall, spreading slowly by underground rhizomes to form a groundcover when spaced close enough. The leaves are sweetly fragrant when bruised, hence the name. If you like bold color and fine texture, this plant will be a fine addition to your woodland, shade, or bog garden!

Landscape & Garden Uses

Growing 10 to 12 inches tall and spreading slowly by rhizomes to 15 inches or more wide, Variegated Sweet Flag is a perfect choice for use as a bright accent, border edger or groundcover in consistently moist to wet sites. It looks great around rocks and boulders around the garden pond, and can even be grown in a container situated at the margins of the pond. Also nice as a grassy-textured and colorful accent in combination container gardens with other plants that like a moist soil. A colorful addition to bog gardens and damp areas in ornamental grass gardens, rock gardens, woodland gardens, and yellow color theme gardens.  

Suggested Spacing:  12-15 inches for mass plantings;  24 inches or more for space between plants

Cultural Preferences

Variegated Sweet Flag is very easy to grow in most any consistently moist to wet soil of average fertility and full sun to part shade. That said, it likes some afternoon shade in warmer climates. Can be grown in pots that are situated at the margins of the garden pond. Acrous is essentially maintenance free. It slowly naturalizes into clumps by spreading roots but is not invasive at all. We rarely fertilize or prune it. In areas that experience colder winters the foliage may need to be groomed or cut back to the ground before new growth emerges in spring. 

Helpful Articles

Click on a link below to find helpful advice from our experts on how to plant, fertilize, prune and water Acorus Sweet Flag plants.

Plant Details

USDA Plant Hardiness Zones: 5b-9b  Find Your Zone
Plant Type:  Ornamental Grass
Height or Length at Maturity:  10-12"
Width at Maturity:  12"+
Spacing:  8-12" apart for groundcover or solid border edging
Growth Habit / Form:  Arching, Clumping, Upright
Growth Rate:  Slow to Moderate
Flower Color:  N/A
Flower Type:  N/A
Flower Size:  N/A
Flowering Period:  N/A
Fragrant Flowers:  N/A
Foliage Color:  Green and Creamy White
Fragrant Foliage:  Yes, very sweet when crushed!
Berries:  No
Sun Needs:  Full Sun, Pat Sun, Mostly Shade. Appreciates Afternoon Shade in Warmer Climates
Water Needs:  Average, High
Soil Type:  Clay, Loam, Sand, Silt
Soil Drainage:  Well Drained, Moderately Drained, Poorly Drained
Soil pH:  5.5 - 6.5
Maintenance / Care:  Very Low
Attracts:  Visual attention
Resistances:  Deer, Disease, Mildew, Heat, Humidity, Boggy Soil, Shade, Insect

Plant Long & Prosper!

Questions? Contact Us!

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