This species produces 2- to 5-foot-tall mounds of narrow green foliage and bottle brush-like silvery-pink to purple flowers, both of which mature to shades of brown. It is the parent of numerous cultivars with notable flowers that range from purple to gray/black. It and some of its cultivars self-sow plentifully in warm climates. It is marginally hardy in Zone 5.
Noteworthy CharacteristicsGood cut or dried flower.
CareGrow in light, average, well-drained soil in full sun. Cut back previous year's foliage by early spring.
PropagationDivide in late spring or early autumn. Sow seed in early spring at 55° to 65°F.
ProblemsRust, eye spot, leaf spots.
- Genus : Pennisetum
- Plant Height : 3 to 6 feet
- Plant Width : 3 to 6 feet
- Zones : 5, 6, 7, 8, 9
- Tolerance : Deer Tolerant, Frost Tolerant
- Bloom Time : Fall, Summer
- Growth Rate : Fast, Moderate
- Light : Full Sun
- Plant Type : Grasses
- Uses : Ground Covers
- Moisture : Medium to Wet
- Maintenance : Moderate
- Flower Color : Pink
- Characteristics : Self Seeds, Showy Foliage, Showy Seed Heads
- Plant Seasonal Interest : Summer Interest
Plant Characteristics are only available to Fine Gardening members
Sign up for a free trial and get instant access to our complete plant guide as well as our entire collection of articles and videos.