Snake’s beard: Ophiopogon
Native to east Asia, Ophiopogon is a member of the Convallariaceae family and is particularly appreciated for its tufts of handsome, evergreen grass-like leaves.
O. jahuran is native to Japan and not frost-hardy; it is therefore best cultivated as a container plant in temperate zones. O. planiscapus is half-hardy and will tolerate a light frost. However, it is still advisable to protect it against frost. Depending on the variety, the linear, arching leaves are dark green, green with a white stripe down the centre or almost green-black as in ‘Nigrescens’.
In summer, spikes of white, bell-shaped flowers appear among the grass-like leaves. ‘Nigrescens’ only grows 20 cm (8 in) high and is an ideal container plant for balconies and terraces. Plants grows best in shade or partial shade, in well-drained, fertile. In summer, they should be watered moderately and fed every month. They can be propagated from seed or by division in spring.