• Overview
    Light Needs:
    Full sun
    Watering Needs:
    Once established, water occasionally; more in extreme heat or containers.
    Average Landscape Size:
    Moderate growing; reaches 2 to 4 ft. tall, 2 to 3 ft. wide.
    Key Feature:
    Colorful, Airy Plumes
    Summer through Fall
  • Detail
    Botanical Pronunciation:pen-i-SEE-tum se-TAY-see-um
    Plant type:Ornamental Grass
    Sunset climate zones:8 - 24, 26 - 29
    Growth habit:Narrow
    Growth rate:Moderate
    Average landscape size:Moderate growing; reaches 2 to 4 ft. tall, 2 to 3 ft. wide.
    Foliage color:Purple
    Blooms:Summer through Fall
    Flower color:Red
    Design IdeasThis is without a doubt the most gorgeous Fountain Grass. Growing to four feet tall, its bronzed foliage is beautiful throughout the season, not just in autumn. It is indispensable for dry stream beds and a lovely fluffy accent in dry gardens. Provides wildlife habitat around water holes and ponds, and adds its billowy character to homegrown meadows. Makes a great erosion-control plant on slopes, both cut and fill. Equally at home in big Southwestern ceramic pots or classical Italian terra cotta on posts and walls, or ganged around entries, steps and gateways. Try three or four matched potted specimens spaced evenly on steps or line them against a bare, light colored stucco wall.
    Companion PlantsBlack-Eyed Susan (Rudbeckia); Aster (Aster); Potentilla (Potentilla); Coneflower (Echinacea); Salvia (Salvia); Shasta Daisy (Chrysanthemum)
  • Care
    Care Information
    Adaptable to most soil types. Water deeply and regularly during the first growing season to establish an extensive root system. Once established, reduce frequency; tolerates moderate drought. Cut foliage back to 4 inches above the ground just before new shoots appear in late winter to early spring.
    Light Needs:
    Light needs: Full Sun
    Full sun
    Watering Needs:
    Water needs: Low
    Once established, water occasionally; more in extreme heat or containers.
  • History & Lore
    While the species Pennisetum setaceum is considered invasive to California, selective plant breeding has resulted in attractive cultivated varieties that are seedless or do not produce viable seed, including Pennisetum setaceum 'Rubrum', 'Fireworks' and 'Skyrocket'. These three cultivars are non-invasive and safe for California gardening efforts.


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