Instructions for Cutting Back Miscanthus Adagio

richardcharles(z10/Malibu)March 21, 2006

I am new to deciduous ornamental grasses. What is the proper technique for cutting back Miscanthus Adagio? When, how low, what shape, etc.

Thanks for your help.

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donn_(7b-8a)

Now, although in your zone, even earlier would have been better.

3-6" from the crown, and it can be flat-topped or slightly bowled, your choice.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2006 at 1:39PM
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richardcharles(z10/Malibu)

Thanks for the quick reply Donn. One other question, must they be cut back?

    Bookmark   March 21, 2006 at 1:48PM
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donn_(7b-8a)

It really depends. If it's a first year plant, you could just trim off dead foliage, and the new leaves will eventually hide the old. As the plant ages, and gets bigger and taller, that becomes more problematic.

How tall is it, and how does last year's foliage look now?

Keep in mind, I'm talking from 3 zones colder than you. I cut my Miscanthus back 2 weeks ago, and they looked awful after a mild winter.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2006 at 1:54PM
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richardcharles(z10/Malibu)

The Adagio is 2'tall x 3'6"wide. Though when standing back the overall effect is a straw color under closer inspection about 10% of the leaves are a new beautiful green. This was the plants first winter and it was planted in my garden around June of last year.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2006 at 2:54PM
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donn_(7b-8a)

I'd probably bite the bullet, and cut it back.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2006 at 3:06PM
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achnatherum(z4or3 Ontario)

rc,
two thoughts
take your time and cut out the dead shoots ~ good pass-time if you're into zen.
or
just cut your grass back to a height just above the new growth. really cutting back is just for 'garden tidiness' and your grass will soon overgrow and hide all the old stems.

It would be a shame to cut into the new growth if it wasn't needed & lots of grassophiles only cut back to a foot or two. I have often thought to try a 'taller cut-back' to see if it would provide a natural staking effect ...

    Bookmark   March 22, 2006 at 10:14AM
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