How to Landscape with Fescue Beach Plants


Fescue beach plants are a great addition to coastal areas because they are native to dunes and sandy shores. The grass is accustomed to poor, sandy conditions and rough weather. There are several types of fescue available, varying in size and color. Using one type will add uniformity to your yard. A combination of several grasses will add texture and visual interest. With mature heights varying from 6 to 12 inches, fescue plants will fight beachfront erosion.

Step 1

Decide where the fescue beach plants will look the best. Measure the planting space to determine how many plants you need. The seeds will be spaced 1 inch apart, so you can fit many plants in a smaller space.

Step 2

Plan to germinate the seedlings in advance of a fall planting. Put seeds in a planting tray and cover with a sandy soil. Combine the soil with compost to make it more fertile and better draining. Keep the trays in a location with temperatures below 75 degrees F. Maintain moisture until the fescue beach plants sprout.

Step 3

Loosen the soil in the garden in the beginning of fall. Run a rotary tiller over the area, working it 4 to 6 inches deep.

Step 4

Combine 3 inches of well-rotted manure or compost into the ground before planting the seedlings. Water the soil to keep it moist.

Step 5

Put fescue beach plants in the ground when the temperatures are above 50 degrees F. This gives them time to become established before winter sets in.

Step 6

Choose blue fescue plants for borders and gardens if the soil is sandy or poor. They also grow well in the partial shade. Put the blue fescue behind other low-growing plants, to add depth. Mix taller plants in with the grass, such as daylilies or poppies.

Step 7

Plant Boreal red fescue plants if the planting location is in the shade or wet. The plants are hardy and will spread quickly. This species also works well on inclines where the soil is eroding.

Step 8

Water fescue plants well in their first growing season. They need the water to become established. Once they do, you can back off on watering and allow Mother Nature to do her job.

Things You'll Need

  • Measuring tape
  • Seeding trays
  • Sandy Soil
  • Water
  • Trowel
  • Compost or well-rotted manure
  • Rototiller
  • Shovel


  • University of Massachusetts Extension: Selection and Maintenance of Plant Materials for Coastal Landscapes
  • Alaska Department of Natural Resources Division of Agriculture: Commercially Available Species and Cultivars
  • Backyard Landscaping Ideas: Coastal Landscaping
Keywords: fescue beach plants, landscape with fescue, fescue grass plants

About this Author

Kelly Shetsky has been a broadcast journalist for more than 10 years, researching, writing, producing and reporting daily on many topics. In addition, she writes for several websites, specializing in medical, health and fitness, arts and entertainment, travel and business. Shetsky has a Bachelor of Arts in communications from Marist College.