Are grasses the next big garden trend? RHS announces its first dedicated display at Chelsea Flower Show

These plants will be stealing the show in the first-ever autumnal event

Chelsea Flower Show
(Image credit: RHS/Georgi Mabee)

RHS Chelsea Flower Show is a key date in our diaries sure to spark plenty of inspiration for gardeners up and down the country. The show kicks off this week – and it's the first time it has ever taken place in September in its 159-year history.

The shift in date of the Chelsea Flower Show has brought huge changes to the array of plants on display. Autumnal foliage and even pumpkins will be the plants setting the tone for garden trends in 2022. However, there is another modest plant set to take off in a big way at the show – grasses. 

The RHS has revealed that there is also going to be an entire area dedicated to grasses. Having witnessed the display, we're sure gardening enthusiasts are going to be researching how to grow ornamental grasses in their own gardens.

ornamental grasses in garden

(Image credit: Getty)

The Great Pavilion grass exhibition

'Ferns and hostas usually deliver the fresh greenery that has been so prominent in designers’ spring palettes in recent years but grasses will be at their very best in September,' says the RHS. 

'For the first time in a long time, there will be a sole display of ornamental grasses in the Great Pavilion created by first time exhibitors Ashcroft’s Perennials

The RHS says that ornamental grasses have not been seen in there for many years, since the spring show is too early in the season. However, the autumn show will ensure they are in flower and looking their best.

While ornamental grasses might sometimes be overlooked as filler plants when planning garden design ideas, they are brilliantly low-maintenance. For much of the year, you can basically leave them to do their thing – with no pruning or deadheading required.

pavilion at Chelsea Flower Show

(Image credit: RHS/ Georgi Mabee)

They're great for wildlife, attracting birds and butterflies. What's more, planting taller grasses is likely to bring relaxing sounds to your garden when the wind picks up.

From molinia and classic pampas grasses to luzula and carex there are endless options to fill out an area of our garden that feels like it's missing something. If you have a small garden - or perhaps you're limited to a balcony or paved area - there are plenty of ornamental grasses that will work in your container gardening ideas too. 

black mondo grass, also known as ophiopogon planiscapus ‘Nigrescens’

(Image credit: Svetlana Zhukova/Alamy Stock Photo)

If you have a shady area of neglected lawn, shade tolerant grasses such as golden lilyturf could be a good option. We're excited to see the Chelsea Flower Show in autumn mode with warmer, richer color palettes than we're used to seeing.

Millie Hurst
Millie Hurst

Millie joined Gardeningetc in January 2021 as a news writer. When she isn't writing about gardening, she's tending to her small front garden. Her geraniums, dahlias and nasturtiums are looking lovely right now. She recently bought a bench for the garden and is loving alfresco lunch breaks and taking time to notice seedlings growing. She loves picking up some new plants at the local garden centre and is never without some fresh flowers at home.