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Fountain Grass

Q.Prevent fountain grass from flopping over

Zone NY | Sbroer added on June 9, 2012 | Answered

Is there a cage of some type to prevent fountain grass from flopping over? This time of year the fountain grass starts to droop. Is there some way to tie up? I have 2 areas that I cannot tie grass. The other areas I have retaining walls that I tie grass to with fishing line.

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Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on June 19, 2012

Flopping ornamental grass can happen for a few reasons, from lack of nitrogen to just getting a bit to little sunlight to rainfall, which knocks the plumes down.

You can buy or build cages for them that can keep them from flopping. The cages you can buy are often used for ornamental flowers such as peonies or irises (which suffer from the same issues) where the large flowers can just get too heavy for the stems. The cages look like tables, but the "table top" is just an open grid that the plant can grow up through and will support the stems with flowers or plumes when they develop.

You can also build the same cages from concrete reinforcement wire, which is available from any hardware store. You can just cut a piece of concrete reinforcement wire to a bit larger than the area you need to support and bend down the edges to make a low table. Set this over the area were the grass grows while the grass is dormant or just in early growth. The grass will grow up through the table support and hides it, but it will support the plumes stems when they develop giving them just enough support to stay upright through the season.

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