Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Grow Feather Reed Grass

Grow feather reed grass as an accent in your yard or plant along the perimeter of your yard for privacy. The feather reed grass is a low maintenance ornamental grasses that will add color and interest to your landscape. 

Feather reed grass has deep green foliage that grows upward out of a clump. This particular grass is the first of the ornamental grasses to bloom. In early June, the reed grass will produce a light pink feather plume. In midsummer, this plume will turn a shade of light purple and in the autumn, the plume will turn a golden tan. The color changes of the plumes is quite eye appealing. 

Plant the feather reed grass as a feature in your garden or plant along a path. You can also plant this grass in a large container, whatever you choose the feather reed grass will become a focal area in your yard and garden.  

I have a grass garden and enjoy it all year round. The movement of the grass in the wind is very relaxing.  One of my favorite things to do at the end of the day is to sit on my patio and watch the reed leaves move in the wind.  I grow ornamental grass in different focal areas of my yard and the grass has added interest to areas that were lacking.

Plant the feather reed grass in spring after the danger of frost has past or you may plant the grass anytime during the growing season; however, the reed grass must receives adequate water, so that the it does not dry out. 

If you intend on planting during the summer months then install a drip-line watering system and water grass daily, it is best to keep the soil evenly moist but not wet the first growing season.  

Select a garden site that has full to part sun and well-drained soil. This particular grass is not picky about the soil in which it grows in and will tolerate rocky, clay and dry soils. Plant the feather reed grass in masses for best appearance. Refrain from planting the grass next to a privacy fence or a wall, as this grass needs good air circulation.

Prepare your garden site by removing the grass, rock and all other debris.  Use your shovel to loosen the soil to ten inches. Amend the soil with four inches of compost. Dig a hole that is the same depth and width of the nursery container.  

Set the grass root ball in the center of the hole and fill the hole with the remaining soil. Space the plants two feet apart. Water the feather reed grass well.  

Continue to water the reed grass in the morning with soaker hose.   For newly planted grass I always keep the soil evenly moist but not wet for the first growing season or until it has matured. Once the feather reed grass is mature, it is drought tolerant.

In the fall when the ornamental grass turns brown do not cut it back.  The foliage is attractive throughout the winter months and provides shelter for birds and small animals.  Trim back the grass in late winter by cutting it back to 12 inches in height. Trim grass before the early spring growth. Divide and transplant clumps every three to four years. Best time to transplant is in the early spring or early fall.

image credit Wikipedia commons

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