Grass newbie: how to plant big grass

Chapel Hill, NC(Zone 7b)

I have never planted grasses of any kind - no clue. I just got a Miscanthus sinensis 'gracillimus' in a 3 gal pot. How should I plant it, how deep/wide, etc. what amendments? I may be back with other grass questions, since DH insists on having several types of grasses.

Should I plant small grasses, like festuca, in one of the non-traditional beds made with card board, hay, coffee grounds and mulch, by digging through this material into the soil underneath? Again - how deep/wide, etc.

From a landscaping point of view, is it desirable to have big clumps of such grasses, say three in a group, or is one sufficient (since they do get quite big)? DH's grasses will be planted along a driveway with lawn behind it. I think I would have some GROUPS of shorter grasses, but the big ones ....?

Thanks, C.

Great South Bay, Lon, NY(Zone 7a)

How deep and wide? As deep as it is in the pot, and twice the width of the rootball.

Add to the soil? It depends on the soil you're planting in. This grass wants fairly lean and well draining soil. If you're planting it in another kind of soil, make the hole wider and deeper, and make the backill fairly lean and well draining. You still don't want to plant it any deeper than it is in the pot.

Gracillimus is a grass which can easily stand on it's own as a specimen, but also works well in groups, if your garden is big enough. It can get 6' tall to the foliage and 7-8' tall to the blooms. It will easily reach 4' wide, and possibly wider. Take that into account when you site it.

Another thing to remember is you'll cut it to the ground this time every year, and it won't regain it's height for some time. This means a bare spot in the garden during it's regrowth.

Chapel Hill, NC(Zone 7b)

Thank you, Donn. I appreciate and respect your advice. I have read many of your posts and you are one of the best. I think I can easily follow your directions concerning this grass. In essence it is no different from a shrub in how you plant it.

Would you have some advice on this? Cheap as I am, I bought a couple of acorus pots, that don't look very good, at a box store (uughgh). Can I put them in a spot (I have two such spots) that is usually very wet after a good rain and stays rather damp for a while. Of course, when I dries out, that may by a problem, Should I even try and water heavily when it is dry ---- or put it much further away by a little stream and thus probably loose it into the general local grass population?

Thanks again,

Great South Bay, Lon, NY(Zone 7a)

Acorus needs lots of water, all the time. If it's soil dries out, the plant pouts by getting burned blade ends, and looks crummy. How about making a simple bog container for it?

Chapel Hill, NC(Zone 7b)

Donn, what is a bog container?

This message was edited Mar 25, 2007 1:01 PM

Great South Bay, Lon, NY(Zone 7a)

A bog container is a pot set up as a water garden.

Chapel Hill, NC(Zone 7b)

We found something to try a bog garden in. If I understand correctly, there is no drainage hole. I will have to transplant the acorus into a pot with clay soil, and then I am good to go, right? I need to find perhaps one other plant to add for interest, but have to find a place that sells water plants.

Thank you so much, Donn.

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