Q.Why is my fountain grass falling over to one side?
I must preface that I just bought my first home and I’m somewhat of a novice when it comes to gardening. I live in cental Texas and just planted some fountain grass in my backyard (early May). It’s doing very well and I’m amazed at how quickly it has grown. Each plant has more than tripled in size in 4 months. Lately each plant has started to tilt or fall over to one side. The plants are not standing erect any longer but still look healthy. I trimmed the first plant that started doing this thinking it was just the shear weight that was causing it to lean or collapse but it is doing it again less than a week later. Is there something wrong with the plant or have they simply gotten so big they cannot support the weight of the new growth and simply need to be pruned more?
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
There are a few things that could be causing this.
One is that the plants are not getting enough light. This encourages weak stem growth and they fall over when they get too big.
Another is that rain or watering can collect on the grass and the weight of this water leans them over and breaks the structure inside the stem and they cannot get upright again.
Over fertilizing can also cause them to fall over.
And some species of grass are just prone to falling over.
In all cases, you can try to correct the issue and this will help. Most people stake up grass that is prone to falling over by putting a few stakes around the outside and attach string to each of the stakes. The string should circle the grass at least 1/3 of the way up.