Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Texas Muhly Grass, Florida Muhly Grass
Muhlenbergia capillaris 'Regal Mist'

Family: Poaceae (poh-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Muhlenbergia (mew-len-BERG-gee-uh) (Info)
Species: capillaris (kap-ill-AIR-iss) (Info)
Cultivar: Regal Mist

Synonym:Muhlenbergia filipes

35 members have or want this plant for trade.

View this plant in a garden

Ornamental Grasses and Bamboo

36-48 in. (90-120 cm)

24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)
USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)
USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)
USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)
USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)
USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)
USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)
USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)
USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)
USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)
USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)
USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun
Sun to Partial Shade


Bloom Color:
Magenta (Pink-Purple)

Bloom Time:
Late Summer/Early Fall
Mid Fall
Late Fall/Early Winter

Grown for foliage
Good Fall Color

Other details:
Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

Soil pH requirements:
5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)
7.9 to 8.5 (alkaline)

Patent Information:
Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:
By dividing the rootball
From seed; direct sow after last frost

Seed Collecting:
Unknown - Tell us

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By htop
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Thumbnail #3 of Muhlenbergia capillaris by TREEHUGR

Thumbnail #4 of Muhlenbergia capillaris by BUFFY690

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There are a total of 9 photos.
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10 positives
3 neutrals
1 negative

Gardeners' Notes:

Neutral coriaceous On Feb 26, 2014, coriaceous from ROSLINDALE, MA wrote:

A very beautiful clump-forming grass in all seasons, but especially when its misty pink bloom floats over it in early fall. It forms neat clumps of fine-textured foliage and does not spread. Growing in full sun and well-drained soils, all five of my plants made it through one mild winter only to die in their second. (Boston, MA Z6a)

East coast gardeners from Z7b to Z5 should consider growing the hardier M. reverchonii instead.

Though its native range reached Massachusetts, all of the plants now in commerce sold as M. capillaris appear to belong to a less hardy southern coastal ecotype, once called M. capilliaris var. filipes. It is technically correct to label these plants M. capillaris, but it misleads those north of Z7b/8a into believing they've purchased a hardy plant. This species may be a zone hardier where there's less winter precipitation than on the east coast.

I wish some enterprising nursery would collect seed from a hardy northern form while that's still possible.

A rare plant in the wild through most of its range, populations are declining. Wild populations depend on fire for their long-term survival. It has recently gone extinct in New England in the wild.

"Regal Mist (R)" is the trademark for this plant. 'Lenca' is the cultivar name, not intended for use.

Neutral Liz53 On Oct 5, 2013, Liz53 from Clinton, WA wrote:

I recently moved from Texas (where pink Muhly grass thrives!) to the PNW. Though I haven't seen much around here, I was thrilled to find it at my local nursery this past spring and bought 3. Now that they should be blooming, only one has blooms and they are puny. Did I remember this when I encountered pink muhly grass at 25% off yesterday? No....I bought 3 more which I'll plant today. I'm hoping they will settle in over the winter and bloom vigorously next summer (and don't rot out in the wet winter season). This is such a beautiful grass I'm willing to take a chance on it. I hope I'll have a positive update to contribute this time next year. Hope springs eternal.

Neutral dunnster1 On Dec 26, 2012, dunnster1 from Seattle, WA wrote:

I have actually never grown this plant, but have admired it in South Carolina gardens for years. I live and garden in Seattle, WA, and wonder if it would flower here in our cool weather, even in full sun? Anyone have experience growing this plant in cool weather?

Positive amallen On May 3, 2012, amallen from Johns Island, SC wrote:

This grass-or its close cousin is grown everywhere on the SC sea islands. Carefree with spectacular misty pink in Fall, especially after heavy dew. Local experts vary about cutting back-greenskeepers and local nurserymen told me not to cut back but rather thin dead leaves from the plant with rake or by hand and keep debris buildup away from base of plant. Cut back plants can be unattractive until full new growth is in but uncut continue to provide visual interest until new growth takes over. May develop rot in center if exceptionally wet season.

Positive ransom3 On Apr 8, 2011, ransom3 from Zephyrhills, FL wrote:

In my opinion the most beautiful of the ornamental grasses. I am amazed at how long Pink Muhly retains that soft pink color even after heavy downpours.I am curioius to see how it appears and contrasts with deep purple millet.

Positive pasogardener On Mar 19, 2011, pasogardener from Paso Robles, CA wrote:

Planted several along front picket fence in August. Only one bloomed slightly. Possibly plants were still too young. Even though blooms were sparse, the plants looked wonderful. Very wispy, but filled the area without blocking out the fence from our view. They held up well to summer heat, winter frost and rain. I did (reluctantly) cut back in February, but they've grown 4-5 inches in the six weeks since. Can't wait until fall to see if we get more blooming. Either way I love the plant.

Positive ceejaytown On Mar 14, 2010, ceejaytown from The Woodlands, TX (Zone 9a) wrote:

I absolutely LOVE my Gulf Coast Muhly. It is pretty throughout the spring as it grows, in the summer as a very neat mound of thin grassy blades, and then POW! in the fall when it goes into bloom. Then I am awestruck!
It reseeds, and that gives me new plantings to place in other areas of my yard, and to give to friends who very much want them after seeing mine in bloom.
Don't cut back until February, or late winter, as the muhly gives interest in the garden even when in its winter color of tan.

Positive FloridaG8or On Jan 23, 2007, FloridaG8or from Lake Butler, FL (Zone 8b) wrote:

In my area this grass is known as "Pink Muhley Gras." I planted it into one of my native gardens last spring, and it has done awsome. I rarley water it and it has exploded in size since it's original purchase. This winter the entire plant looked pink (hence the name). I have actually found this species growing wild in Melrose, Florida, along with wire grass on a piece of land that (fortunatly) hasn't yet been cleared for agreculture or housing. I would recomend it to anyone in the area who is looking for a great drought tolerant grass to accent their garden.

Positive onlyinokla On Jan 5, 2006, onlyinokla from Midwest City, OK (Zone 7b) wrote:

Purchased Pink Muhly Grass last April of 2005. Grew beautifully throughout the months here in Okla. Bloomed in Sept. and was a spectacular puff of deep pink smoke. It still has its plumes (with a light pink hue) and it is now Jan. 2006. Many compliments from neighbors, friends, and walkers. Look forward to planting a ring bed of nothing but Pink Muhly Grass around a Japanese Flowering Purple Plum.

Positive BUFFY690 On Nov 8, 2005, BUFFY690 from Prosperity, SC (Zone 7b) wrote:

I now have 6 clumps of this wonderfull grass. When my other plants start to peter out in the end of the summer this takes over and no one notices. Very Cool grass. Found if I plant it high in the ground and mulch in it does much better (better drainage in our clay soil) I also amend so it wont be sooo heavy.
Fabulous Grass A++

Positive TREEHUGR On Dec 25, 2004, TREEHUGR from Now in Orlando, FL (Zone 9b) wrote:

My town, like so many others in Florida have planted this wonderful native along the highways. Some lingering color on them and it's 12/25.

No major pests or disease problems, will grow in a variety of conditions and it's also found growing wild in various habitats. Even salt.

Provides nesting material and cover for wildlife. See my photo.

Positive parkbob On Jul 16, 2004, parkbob from Abilene, TX (Zone 7a) wrote:

we've had good success and many positive remarks about it. Our sources say its cold tolerance is zone 6-7. Also known in Texas as 'Gulf Muhly'.

Negative pauliemv On Jun 24, 2004, pauliemv from Vineyard Haven, MA wrote:

I planted six of them after seeing them in bloom. They really knocked my sox off! However after a severe New England winter, they all perished. A sad day indeed. I did love the way they looked.

Positive htop On Oct 20, 2003, htop from San Antonio, TX (Zone 8b) wrote:

San Antonio, Tx.
This ornamental clumping grass is native to Texas and Florida and grows 3 feet tall and wide. With the flower spikes (inflorescence), it is 4 feet tall and 4 feet wide. The deep pinkish-red inflorescence which are loose and open in appearance give the tops of the plants a feathery or cotton candy look. They last up to two months. The inflorescence is quite magnificent when backlit by early morning or late afternoon sun.

The preferred time to plant it is in the fall in a location that receives reflected sun, full sun or lightly filtered sun. It adapts to about any type of soil and will thrive in sandy locations. Requiring little water after being established, the plants will perform better and flower more abundantly if given regular supplemental water from spring through fall. It requires no fertilization and has a moderate to fast growth rate. Cut the plants to the ground in late winter (at least by Mid-February). 'Regal Mist' is hardy to 0 degrees. Although it not sterile, it is not invasive.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Mobile, Alabama
Vincent, Alabama
Phoenix, Arizona (2 reports)
Brownsville, California
Carlsbad, California
Clovis, California
Lake Nacimiento, California
Visalia, California
Vista, California
Laurel, Delaware
Archer, Florida
Bartow, Florida
Boca Raton, Florida
Deland, Florida
Gainesville, Florida
Hobe Sound, Florida
Jacksonville, Florida
Lake Butler, Florida
Mc David, Florida
Navarre, Florida
North Palm Beach, Florida
Ocala, Florida
Pensacola, Florida
Port Charlotte, Florida
Port Saint Lucie, Florida
Seminole, Florida
Spring Hill, Florida
Tarpon Springs, Florida
Venice, Florida
Wauchula, Florida
Zephyrhills, Florida
Conyers, Georgia
Lilburn, Georgia
Parrott, Georgia
Mount Prospect, Illinois
Bordelonville, Louisiana
Pikesville, Maryland
Vineyard Haven, Massachusetts
Carriere, Mississippi
Thaxton, Mississippi
Wiggins, Mississippi
Las Vegas, Nevada
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Durham, North Carolina
Maiden, North Carolina
Raleigh, North Carolina
Taylorsville, North Carolina
Winston Salem, North Carolina
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Dallas, Oregon
Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania
Bluffton, South Carolina
Conway, South Carolina
Johns Island, South Carolina
Okatie, South Carolina
Rock Hill, South Carolina
Sumter, South Carolina
Abilene, Texas
Austin, Texas
Boerne, Texas
Iredell, Texas
Jacksonville, Texas
Lake Jackson, Texas
Missouri City, Texas
Rockport, Texas
San Antonio, Texas
Sealy, Texas
Snook, Texas
Spring, Texas
Earlysville, Virginia
Newport News, Virginia
Norfolk, Virginia

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