QUICK REFERENCE PLANTING GUIDE
1. Light/Sun Exposure - Full to part sun.
2. USDA Hardiness Zones – As indicated below.
- 'Blue Dune Lyme' elymus - 4 to 9.
- 'Little Zebra' miscanthus - 5 to 9.
- 'Shenandoah' panicum- 4 to 9.
- 'Fireworks' pennisetum - Winter hardy in zones 9 to 10. In zones 3 to 8, treat as annuals or plant in a container so you can move the plants to a protected area before the first frost.
- 'Red Head' pennisetum - 6 to 9.
- 'White Cloud' muhlenbergia- 5 to 10.
- 'Pink Powderpuffs' muhlenbergia - 5 to 10.
- 'Ever Gold' carex - 5 to 10.
- 'Little Tut Papyrus' cyperus -
- 'Black Nana' japonicus nigrescens - 6 to 10.
- 'Purpurascens' miscanthus - 5 to 9.
3. Planting Distance – As indicated below.
- 'Blue Dune Lyme' elymus - 2 feet apart in ground.
- 'Little Zebra' miscanthus - 3 feet apart in ground.
- 'Shenandoah' panicum- 3 feet apart in ground.
- 'Fireworks' pennisetum - 2 to 3 feet apart in ground.
- 'Red Head' pennisetum - 18 to 24 inches apart in ground.
- 'White Cloud' muhlenbergia- 2 to 3 feet apart in ground.
- 'Pink Powderpuffs' muhlenbergia - 2 to 3 feet apart in ground.
- 'Ever Gold' carex - 2 feet apart in ground.
- 'Little Tut Papyrus' cyperus - .
- 'Black Nana' - japonicus nigrescens -
- 'Purpurascens' miscanthus - 4 feet apart.
4. Mature Height/Spread – As indicated below.
- 'Blue Dune Lyme' elymus - 2 to 3 feet tall.
- 'Little Zebra' miscanthus - 3 to 4 feet tall.
- 'Shenandoah' panicum- 3 to 4 feet tall.
- 'Fireworks' pennisetum - 4 to 5 feet tall.
- 'Red Head' pennisetum - 2 to 3 feet tall.
- 'White Cloud' muhlenbergia- 2 to 3 feet tall.
- 'Pink Powderpuffs' muhlenbergia - 2 to 3 tall.
- 'Ever Gold' carex - 1 to 2 feet tall
- 'Little Tut Papyrus' cyperus -.
- 'Black Nana' - japonicus nigrescens - 4 to 6 inches tall with a similar spread.
- 'Purpurascens' miscanthus - 4 to 5 tall with a spread of 2.5 to 3 feet.
Note: Each variety will reach their mature heights with a 2 to 3 feet spread within 2 to 3 years.
5. Bloom Time – As indicated below.
- 'Blue Dune Lyme' elymus - Late summer.
- 'Little Zebra' miscanthus - Late summer.
- 'Shenandoah' panicum- Fall.
- 'Fireworks' pennisetum - Late summer.
- 'Red Head' pennisetum - Mid to late summer.
- 'White Cloud' muhlenbergia- Late summer.
- 'Pink Powderpuffs' muhlenbergia - Late summer.
- 'Ever Gold' carex - N/A
- 'Little Tut Papyrus' cyperus - .
- 'Black Nana' - N/A
- 'Purpurascens' miscanthus - Late summer to winter.
6. Planting Instructions - Dig a hole twice as wide and twice as deep as the pot in which your plant was grown. Please note that many of our pots are biodegradable. If your plant is not in a traditional plastic pot then you may place the entire biodegradable pot in the ground, otherwise gently remove the root ball from the pot. Partially backfill the hole with soil and place the plant into the hole. The top of the root ball should be level with the ground surrounding the hole. Refill the hole with soil, firming the soil around the plant with your fingers. Check to be sure that the plant is not planted too deeply. If it is, raise the plant carefully and refirm the soil. Water thoroughly.
Although these plants will perform well in average garden soils of all types, we recommend having your soil tested periodically by the local County Extension Office. These tests can determine if the soil needs any amendments to enhance your plants' growth and performance. See below for our recommended practice to improve your soil without any additional testing:
1. Spade or till the soil to a depth of 12 to 18 inches.
2. To provide nutrients and improve drainage, add organic matter to your soil by mixing in a 2 to 4-inch layer of dehydrated manure, garden compost, shredded leaves, and/or peat moss.
3. After active growth begins, periodically feed with Cottage Farms' water soluble Carefree Bud-N-Flower Booster. Plants in containers need more frequent watering and feeding, especially when in active growth and bloom.
Watering - Your plants require 1" of rainfall (or equivalent watering) each week when planted in the ground. Do not allow plants in containers to dry out. In a container that is exposed to full sun, water it well at least once every other day, and possibly every day, during periods of intense summer heat. You may wish to temporarily move the containerized plants to an area where they are shielded from the hot summer sun (i.e. in the shade of a tree, on a porch near an overhang).
Mulching - Apply a 2 to 4 inch layer of shredded bark, compost or other organic mulch around your plants to promote moisture retention, maintain even soil temperatures, and to discourage weed growth.
Weeding - Keep the area around your plants free of weeds. Weeds compete with all plants for food, water and light. Walk around the garden periodically and pull weeds, including the roots, as soon as you see them. Mulch also assists in keeping weeds down.
Grooming - It is best to cut back the dry foliage to about 4-6 inches in height in the spring before growth resumes. When the plant is cut back, spring growth will begin earlier. Leaving old foliage on the plant can delay spring growth by approximately 3 weeks but the grass is not harmed if it is left untrimmed.
Feeding - Feed your plants once every 2-3 weeks during the growing season with a water-soluble fertilizer such as Cottage Farms' Carefree Bud-N-Flower Booster. Discontinue feeding after September 1st so your plants can harden off for winter dormancy. Resume fertilizing when new growth appears in the spring.
Winterizing - Grasses do best if you don't cut them back in the winter. In northern locations that experience freezing winter temperatures, the plants will die back to the ground and go dormant for the winter. They will sprout from the roots in the spring and be even more spectacular with each passing year. After the ground has frozen, apply a winter mulch of evergreen boughs, straws or leaves to prevent lifting of the plant's roots during alternating periods of freezing and thawing.
For container planting, move plants next to your home's southern foundation for added protection. They may also be moved into an unheated protected area such as a garage or cellar. If moved to a protected area be sure you water them well once every 7 to 10 days.
As soon as the weather warms up in the spring remove any mulch from in-ground plantings. At the same time be sure to clean up the garden. Pull or prune off the dead grass stalks to make way for the parade of luxurious new growth.
'Fireworks' - In zones 8 to 10 plants should be trimmed back roughly 1/3-1/2 once active growth stops. Pruning is recommended to make it easier for the plant to survive.
In zones 1 to 7 these plants will not survive freezing temperatures. Treat as an annual or move the containers indoors to an unheated area, such as a garage or basement and water sparingly over the winter.
CAUTION: Not all plant material is edible. Though most plants are harmless, some contain toxic substances which can cause headaches, nausea, dizziness, or other discomforts. As a general rule, only known food products should be eaten. In case of ingestion, please contact your local poison control center at once and advise them of the plant ingested. Keep out of reach of children.