how to plant pampas grass
Fri, May 07, 2021

A Spectacular Perennial That Can Definitely Become a Spectacular Decoration for Your Home

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A Spectacular Perennial That Can Definitely Become a Spectacular Decoration for Your Home Article Preview
pampas grass


An unusual decorative cereal plant – pampas grass, looks spectacular in a spacious garden area. The tall, luxurious plant becomes especially attractive during its flowering period when long peduncles with dense panicle inflorescences begin to rise above the lush clumps. How to grow pampas grass on the site? How does the plant reproduce? What kind of care does a perennial grain need? All questions of planting and caring for pampas grass are in this collection of articles.

Common NameCortaderia selloana (Poaceae)
Plant TypeHerbaceous, perennial
Sizefrom 1.5 to 4 m
Bloom TimeSeptember to October
Flower Colorfrom pale white to crimson
Hardiness Zonesfrost resistance zones 8-9
Native AreaSouth America
Toxicitynot toxic

Pampas Grass Plants Features

  • Pampas grass is a perennial cereal from the family of the same name “Cereals”, which includes about 25 species.
  • Pampas grass also has other names: Cortaderia Cello or Cortaderia dioecious, which is due to the belonging of this type of cereal to the genus Cortaderia. The species got its name in honor of the famous German botanist Friedrich Sello. The very same word “Cortaderia” is translated as “cut” and is associated with the peculiarities of the structure of pointed thin leaves of the plant.
  • In the wild, pampas grass is widespread in southern South America, including in its steppes, called “pampas”. This explains the second name of the cereal crop.
  • How fast does pampas grass grow? Clumps of pampas grass under favorable conditions can reach truly gigantic proportions. So, how tall does pampas grass grow? In the botanical garden of Japan, such a tall specimen grows – a 4-meter bush of grass, about 7 m in diameter and more than 45 years old.
  • Perennial pampas grass easily adapts to growing conditions and can grow in almost any climatic zone, including regions with severe winters.

Pampas Grass, Plant Application

pampas grass pruning
  • The pampas grass flower is grown in culture as an interesting ornamental crop that can decorate a pampas grass landscaping area in an original way. Cortaderia looks spectacular and advantageous as a single accent planting, like a dominant tapeworm. In group plantings, the perennial looks no less attractive, forming an unusual high hedge. The blooming Cortaderia bush by the water, near a garden pond or an artificial reservoir, looks especially beautiful. How long does it take for pampas grass to bloom? Blooming panicles are picturesquely reflected on the water surface and create an unusually beautiful and cozy natural landscape.
  • The grass also goes well with other plants: cereals, valerian, delphinium, miscanthus, meadowsweet, elecampane, etc. Often tall Cortaderia or pampas grass is used for a summer cottage as a background decoration or creating a multi-level alpine slide.
  • An original exotic plant with lush silvery panicles in autumn looks especially impressive and advantageous against the background of yellowing foliage of garden trees.
  • Landscape designers use pampas grass plantings as a plant to set expressive vertical lines to the landscape. How fast does pampas grass grow from seed? Growing large pampas grass requires a spacious open area. In small areas or compact flower beds, such a spreading perennial will look inappropriate and cumbersome.
  • Pampas grass can be easily grown at home as well but you should take into account the best time to plant pampas grass. For this, you only need large flower pots and free space in the house. For the summer, it is recommended to put the pots with the plant outside, in the garden.
  • At the same time, where does pampas grass grow? In New Zealand, South Africa, Spain, etc., the plant is recognized as a weed that must be destroyed. This attitude to cereal crops is due to the plant’s ability to quickly spread and displace other plants, therefore, in these regions, the so-called cereal is used for breeding cereals. chemical weeding. Such aggressive “behavior” is manifested only in climatic zones most favorable for the growth and development of perennials. Cortaderia, like most of its cereal “relatives”, is used for livestock feed.
  • In pampas grass growing zones, like South America, paper is made from the leaves of the pampas grass.
  • Dried perennial panicles are used to create floristic compositions or dry bouquets.

Varieties and Types of Pampas Grass

As an ornamental plant, pampas grass was known in Europe as early as 1837, when the unusual cereal was planted in the gardens of Queen Victoria.

Currently, breeders have bred more than 25 species of perennials and twice as many varieties of cereals.

Classifying the Cortaderia by the color of the inflorescences, the following varietal groups of the plant can be distinguished.

Different Kinds of Pampas Grass with White and Silvery Inflorescences

pampas grass plants
  1. Variety “Pumila Sunningdale Silver” grows up to 3 m, “throws out” tall peduncles with silvery inflorescences.
  2. Variety “Monstrosa” reaches a height of about 2.5 – 3 m, has large whitish inflorescences with a slight shade of yellow, the leaves are bluish-green.
  3. Variety “Patagonia”, up to 2.4 m high, with silvery-yellowish inflorescences. Blooming later, the leaves have a beautiful bluish tint. Cold-resistant variety.
  4. Variety “White Feather” grows no more than 2 m, blooms with whitish lush inflorescences.
  5. Variety “Silver” is relatively short grass, 1.5-2.1 m high, has cream inflorescences, flowering occurs early.
  6. Variety “Senior” reaches a height of about 1.8 m, has whitish inflorescences.
  7. Evita variety – from 1.2 to 1.7 m, with silvery-yellowish inflorescences. It is characterized by early flowering.
  8. Variety “Lilliput” is a low-growing variety of pampas grass, growing no higher than 1-1.5 m. It is distinguished by white inflorescences and gray-green leaves.

Pampas Grass Varieties with Pink Inflorescences

  1. Sunningdale Silver Highfield Pink is a tall variety reaching 2.5-3.5 m and blooms with delicate pale pink inflorescences
  2. The variety “Carminea Rendatleri” reaches a height of 2.5-3.6 m, has pink inflorescences, and straight tall stems
  3. Variety “Scarlet Wonder” grows in height up to 2.5-3 m, has red inflorescences
  4. Variety “Rendatleri” is characterized by beautiful lilac inflorescences, plant height 2.5-2.7 m
  5. Variety “Pink feather”, “Rose Feder” grows no higher than 2.5 m, blooms with pink inflorescences.

Pampas Grass Varieties with Whitish Striped Leaves

  1. Sort “Silver Comet” grows up to 2.5 m, “throws out” silvery inflorescences and cream striped leaves
  2. Variety “Notcort” reaches a height of about 2 m, is distinguished by creamy white narrow leaves
  3. “Albolineata” cultivar, 1.5-2 m high, with a light color of foliage surrounded by a white edging. The variety is characterized by relatively slow growth
  4. The Ice Cool variety is a relatively low variety of cereals (1.5-1.8 m), late blooms, leaves with whitish fields.

Pampas Grass Cultivars with Yellow Striped Leaves

  1. The variety “Golden Goblin” reaches a height of no more than 1.5 m, blooms early, with white flowers. The leaves are decorated with a central yellow stripe
  2. The Movin variety grows in the range of 1.2-1.5 m, the inflorescences are silvery-whitish, the leaves are white with a yellow stripe in the middle
  3. Variety “Golden Fantasy” – one of the smallest (1-1.5 m), silvery inflorescences, leaves are light, with yellow edges and stripes.

Where to Get Pampas Grass?

You can buy pampas grass in any specialty store, plant nursery, or proven online sale. Cortaderia planting material can be sold as seedlings or perennial grass seeds.

Pampas grass is considered an unpretentious, hardy crop that does not cause any particular problems to plant. Meanwhile, how to plant pampas grass seeds in order to grow a chic and well-developed cereal bush on your site, you should take into account some of the peculiarities of planting and choosing a place for a perennial culture.

In regions with a temperate climate, the Cortaderia is safely planted in open ground, without fear of winter frosts. But as for the regions of risky agriculture, it is better to grow pampas grass in bulk containers, which are transferred indoors for the winter.

When to Plant Pampas Grass and Where to Plant Pampas Grass?

pampas grass care
  • How to start pampas grass from seed? When choosing a site for planting pampas grass, it is important to take into account the preferences of the cereal crop. Cortaderia needs a sunny area, closed from drafts and gusty winds, with fertile, loose, and breathable soil. Although, by and large, the plant can grow in almost any conditions, with different types of soil. The exception is too shaded and wetlands. The decorativeness of the pampas grass will directly depend on the amount of sunlight.
  • It will be successful if you know how to plant pampas grass near rocky buildings. Such a neighborhood will be of significant benefit to the plant, since the stones are able to “give off” the accumulated heat, thus optimizing the development of the curtain.
  • Young bushes of pampas grass are best planted in the spring, in the second half of March. It is not worth delaying the planting dates, allowing the seedlings to take root in a new place before the start of the active growing season.
  • If the seedlings were purchased in the fall, it is better to keep them until spring, providing the plants with moderate watering and a lower temperature. The autumn planting of the plant runs the risk of becoming in vain since there is a high risk of freezing a young immature cereal.

Pampas Grass, Rules Pampas Grass Care

Where to plant pampas grass? and how to care for pampas grass? Pampas grass is considered an absolutely unpretentious and tenacious crop. And although in its homeland the plant is often associated with an aggressive weed, in our area the pampas grass is not prone to spreading so quickly. This is due to the harsh cold winters, which are a natural deterrent for the uncontrolled reproduction of the thermophilic culture.

Cortaderia is practically not attacked by pests and is completely indifferent to diseases. Such advantages greatly facilitate the care of a perennial, which practically does not require additional attention.

The only inconvenience when caring for the potted pampas grass is the sharp, tough leaves that can cut you. Therefore, do not plant the pampas “beauty” near garden paths or near places where children can play. Gloves and eye protection should be used when handling the plant.

Fertilizing and Feeding Pampas Grass

how to plant pampas grass

In early spring, complex mineral pampas grass fertilizer is applied to the soil.

During the active growing season, in summer, the cereal crop can be fed with nitrogen-containing fertilizers that stimulate the growth of green mass.

Faded inflorescences of pampas grass retain their decorative appearance for a long time, so you should not cut them off immediately after flowering.

Pampas Grass Pruning

How to trim pampas grass? To preserve the attractive decorative appearance of the curtain, the pampas grass is pruned in the spring.

How to prune pampas grass? During pruning, old leaves are removed so that they do not clog the bush, as well as faded dry inflorescences.

During the pruning period, the Cortaderia are given a neat, rounded appearance. Pruning is carried out with gloves so as not to cut your hands on the sharp edges of the leaves of the cereal plant.

Pest and Disease Control of the Pampas Grass:

Occasionally, if you know how to grow pampas grass the plant can be affected by diseases such as anthracnose or powdery mildew. If signs of disease appear, all affected areas are removed, and the bush itself is treated with a fungicidal solution.

Dry, hot weather can provoke the appearance of pests such as aphids and spider mites on the leaves of the pampas grass. To combat parasites “insecticidal preparations will be useful.

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