Ornamental Fountain Grass
A Showy Ornamental Grass for Gardens and Water Features
Ornamental grasses such as Fountain Grass have become so popular because of their grace and beauty. Their feathery flowers sway with the wind to contrast nicely with more solid shrubs and trees, or hardscape elements such as boulders.
Why do so many gardeners and landscapers favor Fountain Grass?
• It is a smaller ornamental grass and is not overpowering. Still, it is large enough to be appreciated as a stand-alone feature.
• The flowers range from silvery to pinkish; they are feathery and “cat-tail” like.
• Fountain grass attracts birds and is deer resistant.
Great Near Water
Fountain Grass is a great addition to any garden, and it thrives under many conditions providing we understand this plant’s unique features. Native to Eastern Asia and Western Australia, Fountain Grass does best when it receives moisture on a regular basis. It favors medium to wet soils and will grow nicely near ponds. This would not be a good choice for Xeriscape.
Though Fountain Grass will grow in partial shade, we find it flowers best in full sun. This leads us to recommended zones. Fountain Grass does best in Zones 6 to 9 however, some gardeners report they have had success in Zone 5 providing the spot is protected and in the winter receives the benefits of full sun and minimal wind.
Give it Space to Grow
A mistake people make with Fountain Grass is planting too many too close together. This grass is best appreciated when allowed to fully grow out and add to your landscaping. The feathery plumes will bend and sway with the breeze and provide you and your garden visitors with a restful and peaceful view.
A Grass for all Seasons
Fountain Grass may reach 5 feet in height under ideal conditions. It is a beautiful grass but not overpowering, making it an ideal plant for Asian-inspired landscaping in almost any setting. The grass will change color with the season. The narrow leaves are a lovely green in the spring and summer, then as cooler weather approaches they change to yellow and finally to a light brown. Many gardeners will cut down the dead leaves in late winter to encourage new growth in the spring.
A Lovely Addition
Please remember that ornamental grasses are not like the grass on your lawn! Treat them as you would a favorite shrub and water them throughout the year and provide mulch around the base and provide good drainage. With minimal care, your Fountain Grass will grace your landscaping for many years.