Forum home Plants

Pennisetum advena rubrum

pitter-patterpitter-patter Posts: 2,203
I bought a large pot of this grass last summer, not knowing that it’s tender. In late autumn I’ve cut the whole plant back, split it into about nine small clumps and overwintered those in a heated guest room. Most of the clumps have survived and have grown a bit. (I now know that I should cut and divide grasses in spring.)

  • Can I start hardening it off in a cold frame or should I wait?
  • Can I cut it back again?
  • What would be the best way of overwintering this grass?
Photo to follow soon...


  • pitter-patterpitter-patter Posts: 2,203
    Here it is with some self seeded lobelia.

  • pitter-patterpitter-patter Posts: 2,203
    Burncoose suggests it’s hardy to -15, which would be great, but that’s not what I know.
  • ButtercupdaysButtercupdays Posts: 4,405
    It looks great with your wallpaper :)
    I would leave it as is, and maybe pot on again in a bit, grasses always look better in decent sized clumps.
    I love Pennisetums. but don't think there's much hope of them surviving here, though some like 'Hameln' are supposed to be hardy and I've seen them used in the borders in a relatively local garden.
    But that's down there on the plain and we're up here in the hills and we've had -12 going on -14, with a wind like knives, straight off the Urals and ice that froze the rushes solid so that you could cut them out in blocks!
    My Stipa gigantea is fine though and there's always plenty of Deschampsia, it grows wild here :)
  • PerkiPerki Posts: 2,366
    Pennisetum rubrum is defently not Hardy, mine keeled over with the first light frost didn't even get chance to lift it.
    I wouldn't start harding it off it far to early treat like annuals. I wouldn't cut new fresh growth but its up to you, you've got plenty to experiment with. 
  • pitter-patterpitter-patter Posts: 2,203
    edited March 2021
    Thank you, @Buttercupdays and @Perki. I wish the information online would be more consistent, especially from great nurseries such as Burncoose. 

    I will treat them as I do my pelargoniums then, which are also crammed on windowsills. I was just hoping I could make some room for some seedlings. A heated greenhouse is what I need.
  • pitter-patterpitter-patter Posts: 2,203
    @WonkyWomble Am I right in thinking that you have this grass in the garden? Has it survived the winter or is it too early to say?
Sign In or Register to comment.