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Zebra grass, advice on how to plant and care for Miscanthus sinensis

Miscanthus sinensis

Zebra grass, also called eulalia grass or Chinese silver grass, is an ornamental grass with tall, swaying fronds.

Zoom in on Zebra grass facts

NameMiscanthus sinensis
Family – Poaceae
Type – perennial, grass

 – 3 to 10 feet (1 to 3 m)
Exposure – full sun

Soil: ordinary  –  Foliage: evergreen  –  Flowering: all of fall

Planting zebra grass, Chinese silver grass

Miscanthus grass plantingPlanting is best performed in spring in soil amended with soil mix. It’s also possible to plant in fall, especially if it doesn’t get too cold in winter in your area.

There are different ways of planting it:

  • as a standalone,
  • in clusters to make Zebra grass flower beds,
  • and along a line to form a hedge (much like bana grass, another grassy hedge that’s great to lock intruders out).

Zebra grass care

Zebra grass careBest is to find a sunny spot for it.

For hedges, plant them 3 feet apart (1 m).

Water often, and alot, during the first and second year.

Later on, you won’t need to water anymore.

As described below, the only care you’ll need to give it is a yearly trimming at the end of winter.

Trimming zebra grass, Chinese silver grass

Trimming pruning miscanthusAt the end of winter or very beginning of spring, as soon as sprouts appear, cut back the stalks with pruning shears.

Give the clump a low haircut at that time.

If you want to multiply your Miscanthus, do so through crown division in spring:

  • With a spade, chop the clump in half
  • Tease out the portion that you want to move
  • Plant it in its new spot, and water abundantly

Learn more about Miscanthus sinensis

Zebra grass producing amazing seed panicles Windbreaker and ornament are two of the garden uses that this perennial offers.

It is recognizable thanks to its distinctive floral scapes and stalks that remain on the plant all winter long.

This grass only requires very little care and makes for easy growing.

Smart tip about zebra grass, also called maiden grass

You can set it up in a bed or as a standalone, and spread pozzolana for mulch: it is particularly well suited to this plant and matches its ornamental style well.

Images: CC BY 2.0: MIKI Yoshihito, CC BY-SA 2.0: Leonora Enking, F. D. Richards; depositphotos: Vladdon; Pixabay: Hans Braxmeier
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