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Black-Flowered Fountain Grass, Black-Seeded Fountain Grass
Pennisetum alopecuroides var. viridescens

Family: Poaceae (poh-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Pennisetum (pen-ih-SEE-tum) (Info)
Species: alopecuroides var. viridescens

Category:

Ornamental Grasses and Bamboo

Perennials

Height:

24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

Spacing:

18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

36-48 in. (90-120 cm)

Hardiness:

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)

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun

Danger:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:

Dark Purple/Black

Bloom Time:

Late Summer/Early Fall

Mid Fall

Foliage:

Grown for foliage

Herbaceous

Blue-Green

Shiny/Glossy-Textured

Other details:

This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Self-sows freely; deadhead if you do not want volunteer seedlings next season

Flowers are good for drying and preserving

Provides winter interest

Soil pH requirements:

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:

Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:

From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall

From seed; winter sow in vented containers, coldframe or unheated greenhouse

From seed; stratify if sowing indoors

From seed; sow indoors before last frost

From seed; direct sow after last frost

From seed; germinate in a damp paper towel

Seed Collecting:

Bag seedheads to capture ripening seed

Collect seedhead/pod when flowers fade; allow to dry

Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds

Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds

Regional

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

,

Attleboro, Massachusetts

Heathsville, Virginia

Gardeners' Notes:

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Positive

On Oct 29, 2009, wheatmaw from Attleboro, MA wrote:

Black Flowering Fountain Grass- Pennisetum alopecuroides- "Moudry" This specimin blooms in mid to late fall and loves the sun. It grows in consistent soil moisture but prefers well drained soil. It grows to approximately 3 feet with 12 to 18 inch spacing. This ornamental grass is hardy zones 6 to 9. Special note: If the normal pruning methods do not provide seed heads of around 6 to 8 inches in length try burning the plant to the ground in early spring (in Southern Massachusetts around March 15 th, and provide minimal amounts of moisture and a 10-10-10 furtilizer. Beautiful ornamental and easy to care for. Dave Wilson, Massachusetts