Monkey Grass Decorative Edging Questions

HFK123(Oklahoma City)June 29, 2005


A few weeks ago I planted some Monkey Grass along my 120' driveway. I have no idea just what type it is (I dug it up by the side of a country road) but I doubt that it's anything exotic. I planted it just before a two week trip out of town. I'm back now, and all the grass appears to be doing well (that stuff is definitely tough: I was none too tender with it while seperating/planting). I have three questions:

1. I'd intended to use some cheap plastic edging to separate it and the adjacent bermuda lawn , but found it the plastic stuff be too flimsy to install easily. I'm going to exchange it for one of the other types of edging, but thought I'd check here first to see what the group reccomends. My first choice is the green steel strips, expensive, but probably much easier to install (just put 2x4 on top of it and whack away). It should also last a good long while. I've also considered rock edging, which I'm using in other parts of the yard (albeit in the back of the house). I'm not sure that the rock would provide the best separation between the two types of grasses: I think the bermuda would eventually impinge upon the Monkey Grass, or vice-versa)

2. Should I use some form of mulch? I want the grass to spread as rapidly as possible (the tufts are planted approximately 1' apart from one another). Will the mulch prevent spreading?

3. What should I fertilize it with? Will regular lawn fertilizer work alright?

Thanks for the help.

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1. It spreads by underground runners, so your edging would have to be deep enough to prevent that.

2. You can use mulch while it's filling in, and it won't slow the spread.

3. You don't usually have to fertilize it, at all.

PS...It's not really a grass, but a flowering perennial. You might get more help if you post to the Perennial Forum.

    Bookmark   July 5, 2005 at 4:59PM
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My monkey grass does not flower...the blades are 3-4 inches long. My problem is that although I have watered every day during our hot Dallas summer, much of the grass is brown and sparse. Can fertilizer or dirt help it? please advise.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2006 at 1:15PM
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Try aluminum gutter material in various colors for brick edging.
After years of maintaining angled brick edging around our front beds, I relaid the upright angled brick within aluminum gutter material which holds the brick in a straight line and keeps our St. Augustine grass from growing into it. After three years, we still love this maintenance-free approach.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2007 at 3:37PM
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It might be helpful to identify exactly what we are talking about here as there seems to be a couple of different posters with questions. Monkey grass is a common name applied to both Liriope and Ophiopogon (mondo grass, lilyturf, aztec grass, etc.). Neither are native to the US and the chances of finding either growing naturally and unattended along the side of a country road are a bit slim :-) And neither is a grass - both are fleshy rooted, rhizomatous perennials of the Lily family generally used as groundcovers. They both produce noticeable flowers although some forms (dwarf mondo, Ophiopogon japonicus 'Nana') seldom bloom. Care for both of these types of plants is somewhat different than that involved with a true ornamental grass, which is why clarification of what we are really talking about is requested.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2007 at 10:26AM
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