Big Twister Grass
Draws Attention in Containers or Rain Gardens
Who says gardeners need flowers to add interest to containers or beds? Big Twister grass, also called juncus or rush, is the perfect complement to flowering ornamentals. The deep green grass grows in twisted or spiral shapes. It’s a perfect focal point for container arrangements or rain garden designs.
Juncus, also known as common rush, is a grass that’s native to areas of Australia, New Zealand and North America. The plant can spread by branching roots just above or under the ground.
Many rushes grow to a height of one to four feet and flower in late summer or fall. Although known and grown for its conversation-starting twisted foliage, Big Twister also blooms, typically with small white flowers. The plant generally reaches heights of only about one foot, which also makes it a great container selection.
Water and Watch Twister Grow
Big Twister grows in many types of soils, but can become stressed and brown when faced with drought. The plant is deer resistant and requires no real maintenance, such as trimming or deadheading. Although it can handle heat, it prefers water. Letting some water pool around the first few inches of Big Twister’s crown can help protect it during hot, dry periods.
Juncus has no serious problems with insects or diseases. Sometimes, the stems can get leaf or rust spot, but the plant typically can handle standing water. The foliage dies back in winter in colder zones, but stays evergreen in warmer climates. Big Twister sometimes is called Spiral Juncus, or Corkscrew Rush. Although the plants have similar qualities, Big Twister stands on its own.
Where to Plant Big Twister
Big Twister is a North American native and not as invasive as some varieties of Juncus, but if a gardener wants to keep the plant from spreading, the best solution is to plant the Juncus in a container. As a landscape plant, giving it some room to spread after a few years solves the problem. You can also plant Big Twister in a pot and bury the pot in the ground. The plant fares best in full sun.
One of the best uses of Big Twister Juncus is in a rain or water garden. The plant can control erosion and provide visual interest in areas of a yard or garden that typically flood or pool with water. Big Twister is perfect along the edges of bogs, ponds or ditches. The plant has a natural, even wild appearance in the garden, but can look more formal in a large container surrounded by low-growing annuals such as pansies or petunias.