Want something colorful for your garden? You’ll love the purple colored fountain grass plants. It complements your gorgeous green plants and eliminates the monotone looks. Before you look for details about how to grow purple fountain grass, you need to understand purple fountain grass care. If you sure you can do the maintenance, you’re ready to grow this grass.
Compared to the other plants that grow annually, purple fountain grass is pricier. This beautiful plant isn’t cold hardy; you will be able to enjoy this plant for two seasons every year. Purple fountain grass plant is clump formed ornamental plant that is tropical plant. This one is non-invasive and deer resistant at once.
Purple Fountain Grass Care
Purple fountain grass becomes the centerpiece of your garden because of its beauty. You can even plant this gorgeous plant inside the container and spread the beauty to the entire garden. Or you can mass some plants together with this one. For example, you can do it in border planting. Purple fountain grass care is important to help making your plants become specimen plants.
Plant your purple fountain grass with some other plants that have coarser texture to make your garden looks more adorable with striking contrast. Just like the maiden grass, this purple fountain grass will be a great option in autumn flower gardens. The plums or seed heads that are feathery can be used to make dried flower arrangement. Here are quick tips of purple fountain grass care.
- Purple fountain grass that’s also known as red fountain grass needs full sun exposure to grow. Make sure you grow this plant in sunny location.
- This plant can grow in any soil that is well drained with acidic pH level to neutral pH level.
- Though your purple fountain grass plants can grow anytime, the best time to plant them is in spring. They’ll look beautiful in July.
- Mature purple fountain grass plants will reach 5 feet height and similar width. So make sure you add enough spaces between your plants. Add 3 feet or more spaces between your purple fountain grass plants. This purple fountain grass care is going to help your plants grow healthily.
- You must dig a wide and deep hole in order to accommodate your plant’s roots.
- After you plant the purple fountain grass plants, make sure you water them thoroughly to nourish them.
- You have to make sure that your purple fountain grass is free from danger. Plant the plants in area where they are safe from the strong winds.
Another purple fountain grass care is providing less shade. It is true that purple fountain grass plant tolerates light shade. But this plat loves warmer condition, so try your best to find place that is warm enough for this plant. The most sunlight it gets, the better it grows.
And about the soil, you can grow your purple fountain grass plants in many types of soil; just make sure that your soil is drained well. Yet, the best soil to grow this plant is the loamy soil.
Rubrum Purple Fountain Grass
The botanical name for purple fountain grass is pennisetum setaceum Rubrum. This plant is known as ornamental grass that is drought tolerant. Specific purple fountain grass care is highly required. Just like treating cactus, there are some special things to consider when you’re treating your purple fountain grass plants. Below are some of those things.
- Ornamental plants that are drought tolerant need you to water them only once to twice every week. You need to keep doing it until the plants start established. Give some time for your soil to become dry when you touch it between every watering. If your plants are planted in area that receives occasional rain, watering the grass isn’t necessary.
- Watch your location’s humidity and temperature. If the temperature during the winter in your area is twenty degrees Fahrenheit or more, you can grow your purple fountain grass perennially. Then the cut back is going to happen during the early spring every year. With good purple fountain grass care, new growth initiates when temperatures climb.
Keys to Grow Fountain Grass Plants Successfully
- If you’re living in colder area, you can only enjoy the beauty of purple fountain grass with its striking form and vivid color during summer and autumn. If you want to see them along the year, you must work harder to grow your plants indoors.
- We all know that purple fountain grass plants can grow well in garden with poor soil. However, good purple fountain grass care like fertilizing the soil is going to boost the growth. When your grass is flowering, it is going to need more nutrients, and this usually happens in summer. Pick all-purpose fertilizer that is slow release.
- Consider using containers to grow your purple fountain grass plants. This is a brilliant idea if you want them this plant to grow during winter. You can bring your purple fountain grass that grows in the containers to your house or greenhouse. This purple fountain grass care is going to help protecting your plants from cold weather that kills them.
If you think that’s all you must know about purple fountain grass care, you’re wrong. There are more things you better know before growing this purple fountain grass plant, whether in the garden or in your greenhouse.
Purple Fountain Grass in Containers
So you have decided to grow your purple fountain grass plants, in your containers. What purple fountain grass care is necessary? So there are at least two ways to propagate your purple fountain grass plants. You can propagate the plants through seed or division. Your purple fountain grass will be self-seed readily in your garden. Yet, root division is a more reliable and faster propagation form.
1. Seed propagation of purple fountain grass plants
Seeds of purple fountain grass are producing the flowering stems. These stems are usually full of the feather seeds. When those feathery seeds are dry, you need to collect the seeds. They’ll dry during the autumn. Take the entire stems then let all flower stalks to become dry by placing them in dry and cool place. What’s the other purple fountain grass care you’re going to need?
Sow the seeds in potting soil only with sand dusting on top of it. Then water it until your container is moist evenly. Now use plastic bag for the plant. Another alternative is by topping it using plastic dome. When you finally get seedlings that have two true leaves sets, you can start transplanting them into bigger pots. Harden your plants off during the spring then install them in prepared beds.
2. Division propagation of purple fountain grass plants
Dig up your purple fountain grass plants when they are about to dormant. The cut them into several sections with both healthy leaf and roots. Use a very sharp and clean implement that will cut then discard all dead plant or rotten roots and other matters. Then you must replant them immediately. Crucial purple fountain grass care here is to keep them moist.
Actually, purple fountain grass plants are sterile. This means the plants are not going to give you useful seeds. So you might want to get the other purple fountain grass plants by buying them from online source or nursery. If you really need to know the steps to grow purple fountain grass perennial, some extra tips about purple fountain grass care are going to help.
Purple Fountain Grass Perennial
1. Check the excessive growth of purple fountain grass plants
We all love the habits of robust growth which are the long living plants’ key characteristic. Yet, vigorous growth is going to make your plants become unmanageable in spread, size, and shape. So there’s a purple fountain grass care you must do: portion the plants’ clump. This is going to keep your plants’ size manageable. This also retains the display qualities and vitality of plants.
If you don’t check your plants regularly, you are going to make your purple fountain grass spread and grow uncontrollably. Make sure your plants’ roots don’t spread outward. If this happens, your plants’ center is going to die out and leave bare patch that’s ugly. Regular division will remove dead materials so that replanted sections will be energized, healthy, and centered.
2. Another purple fountain grass care is to protect your plants
By splitting your purple fountain grass plants, you’re actually protecting your plants from pests such as fungal disease and insects. When you lift the plants out of garden soil or potting soil, you will expose larvae and grubs that will absolutely destroy your plants’ roots if you don’t remove them.
Portioning your purple fountain grass plants is most effective purple fountain grass care. This is going to curtail the entire infections above your garden ground. Just cut out then remove the entire areas that are affected. Keep doing this until everything that’s left is the healthy growth.
3. Division helps maintaining your plants’ productivity and performance
When your purple fountain grass plants grow overcrowded, the seed heads’ and blossoms’ size and number are going to suffer. Besides, the entire performance is also going to be suffering. Maladies such as stunted growth also general vitality lack are going to be common problems for your purple fountain grass plants that grow overcrowded.
If you don’t do some purple fountain grass care to overcrowded plants, the flowering perennials are going to produce smaller and fewer blossoms. It happens because your plants are conserving energy. Cramped roots cannot access moisture and nutrients that required flourishing. Even your soil is going to be depleted very soon. Split up your perennials clumps to nourish your plants.
Purple Fountain Grass Seeds
So you’ve learned about purple fountain grass care. Do you know that there are some varieties of this plant? Though the treatments of those varieties aren’t different, you should know which one is the right purple fountain grass plant you are about to plant in your garden. There are pennisetum setaceum fireworks. This variety is variegated with hot pink edges and burgundy right in the middle.
The height of this variety can grow between 3 and 6 feet while the spread can reach between 1 and 3 feet. This fountain grass plant is perennial in between zones 9 and 10. There’s also pennisetum alopecuroides you can grow as the perennial in between zones 5 and 9. Here are several types of the pennisetum alopecuroides.
1. Pennisetum Alopecuroides Burgundy Bunny
This variety has 16 inches height and also 16 inches spread. Its foliage comes in red hints during the summer. But the color becomes deep reddish purple during the autumn. This Pennisetum Alopecuroides Burgundy Bunny has flower heads that are buff colored.
2. Pennisetum Alopecuroides Little Bunny
Unlike the previous type, this type of Pennisetum Alopecuroides varieties is 12 inches height with a bit bigger spread. This type is lack of colorful foliage that’s owned by the previous type. However, this type of Pennisetum Alopecuroides also features the flowers in buff colored.
Common Problems Faced By Purple Fountain Grass
Fountain grass that’s open pollinated came from scrubby and open habitats in East and South Africa, Arabian Peninsula, and Southwestern Asia. The original version of this plant was introduced in many countries. It came to Hawaii in 1914 then to Arizona in 1940s. Actually, this plant is free from pests and diseases. But sometimes it faces the rust problems.
The rust problems usually will grow in wet and warm conditions. Rust problem is going to appear as the little spots in yellow. Then they will become rusty portions in reddish brown color on your plants’ leaves. What purple fountain grass care is you spot the rust problems? First solution is to use the fungicidal spray.
If you haven’t spotted those rust problems, you must prevent the problems by making sure that the air around your plants is free from the weeds. Make sure the airflow is proper. Also avoid over-watering your plants. If you are about to water your purple fountain grass plants, make sure you water only the plants; base.
Your purple fountain grass plants might be strong plants, but they can be defeated if you have no idea how to do the purple fountain grass care. Make sure all instructions above are thoroughly done.