This Grass Is One To Love

A clump of love grass in fall.

A clump of love grass in fall

This mass of love grass is an excellent use to show off its beautiful plumes

This mass of love grass is an excellent use to show off its beautiful plumes.

Ornamental grasses can be a great addition to the fall garden if you want color. And one of the best for a soft wispy purple-pink plume is love grass. You don’t see it used very much in our area, but it does well when planted in full sun and the soil is well drained. However, like many grasses, it will tolerate a wide range of conditions, but it likes to be moist or watered often if we do not have rain. Another feature is that it can be planted almost any time of the year, and if your clumps get too big you can divide then into sections in spring after danger of frost has passed. Another good thing is it is not too expensive. Today I was at a nursery and 3 gallon plants were $12.95.
Landscape uses can be very interesting, especially if you use it as a textural contrast. I like them in contrast with rough textured things like the dwarf Ilex cornuta ‘Rotunda’ hollies (common name: Chinese horned holly, which nobody knows) and Southern magnolia. Other fall fruiting plants like beautyberry are good, and as a mass planting surrounded by liriope as the base. In any case next spring make a note to consider them as a nice addition to a sunny garden.

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John Floyd

John Floyd has been gardening--and learning about Birmingham area gardening--for more than 30 years. In addition to his day-to-day experience, John has degrees in horticulture from Auburn and Clemson Universities and was Editor-in-Chief of Southern Living.

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