I just ordered some Japanese blood grass that will hopefully be here soon. I hear it can get invasive. I am wondering how invasive is invasive? Is it something where I can just pull some of the extra growth every season or should I bury a barrier of some sort. If so, what would work? I never had to do that before for anything. I am new to gardening. Could I use a plastic 3 gallon pot that another plant came in with the bottom cut out? Maybe a coffee can with the bottom cut out? What about the black plastic edging stuff that bends. More importantly, how deep does it have to go? I read in the description of the bloodgrass that if it starts to grow green and not red anymore then it has reverted back to its parents or something and is even more invasive. It said that that is always a possibility and to get rid of it then. Can someone just give me some pointers here. I live just NE of Atlanta. Zone 7b or 8a. Kind of on the border. I really like the way the stuff looks but I want to prevent any problems with it at the start.
The true red form, Imperata cylindrica 'Red Baron', isn't invasive at all. What you have to worry about is the possible reversion to green. The green form, I. cylindrica var. major is very invasive. 'Red Baron' propagated by division, and not by tissue culture has a much lower incidence of reversion.
'Red Baron' is another Kurt Bluemel (famous grass pioneer) creation.
Any good sized (16" diameter and up) heavy plastic or pottery container will keep the running variety in check. Bury the pot, or use it as a classic surface container.
I was thinking of using one of those black plastic 3 gallon pots that I bought another plant in if nothing else. Do I cut out the bottom? It does have drainage holes in the bottom too. Can the rhizomes or whatever get out the holes and spread? What else could I use if I wanted a larger area of the bloodgrass? Would the landscape edging stuff work? I was kind of hoping to get an area of it thats about 1x2 ft.
Unless the landscape edging is at least a foot deep, it won't stop the invasive form.
However, if you bought Imperata cylindrica 'Rubra' or 'Red Baron' from a reputable dealer, you don't need to worry about it running amuck. Plant it out with no protection, and in a few years it'll make itself into a clump about a foot and a half in diameter. When it gets to the size you like, simply keep it that size by root-pruning it.
Thanks so much. That's what I was looking for, about a foot deep.
I didn't think about where I got it. I ordered from direct gardening, (house of wesley or whatever) house of crappy plants last year before I knew better and had joined Daves. They sent me credit for all the dead plants they sent me and I just asked for that since I really didn't know what else to use it on. I didn't want to spend anymore money with them and just wanted to be done. So, the other question I guess really is, will I even get a living bloodgrass from them. Forget about the reputable dealer part so I guess I better plant the barrier.