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Plant Profile: Zebra Grass (Miscanthus sinensis ‘Zebrinus’)

ZebraGrass (1)For long season interest consider Zebra grass. It grows in tight clumps beginning in spring and reaches 5-6’ by mid-summer. Its long, arching leaves are horizontal striped with wide bands of cream and green and add both color and texture to the back of the border. Even heat and humidity do not mar the beauty of this grass. By mid September it will reach 6-7’ when its fluffy copper tinted blooms rise above the still attractive foliage. As fall progresses the blooms fade to cream and the foliage turns a golden yellow on its way to brown. Leaving the plant through the winter not only adds to the garden scene, it also protects the crown so that the plant can arise again in spring. Throughout the entire growing season the clump stays attractive even as it increases in circumference. Zebra grass is good as a single specimen, attractive in a perennial border, or used with others as a hedge.

Type: Perennial Grass.

Bloom: Feathery, copper tinted inflorescence in fall; grown also for cream and green striped foliage that is attractive from spring until frost.

Size: 7-8′ H x ever expanding girth.

Light: Full sun.

Soil: Average, well drained soil.

Hardiness: Zones 5-10

Care: Cut back in early spring.

Pests and Diseases: None of importance.

Propagation: Division in spring (spreads by rhizomes).

Companion plants: Sedum x telephium ‘Autumn Joy’, Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’, Mexican sunflowerm(Tithonia rotundifolia), canna ‘King Humbert’ orange).

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