Stipa arundinacea (now known as Anemanthela lessonia) grows three by three feet in shades of olive and orange. This is a lovely grass for all seasons. A new variety, ‘Sirocco’, is smaller, about eighteen inches, with bright shades of copper and pink in cool weather. Both need full sun or they will revert to green. Both require only minimal water.
Stipa gigantea has arching blades about twenty inches high. The tall flowering wands are reminiscent of golden oats and can attain heights of eight feet. It is very dramatic when back-lit by the sun and moving with the breeze. This grass is quite drought tolerant.
Stipa tenuissima is another very drought tolerant grass. This one does reseed readily, but seedlings can easily be removed if they become a problem. The fine leaves move with the slightest breeze, providing an airy look. Plants are often available in four inch containers as well as gallons.