Stipa pulcherrima

mdahms1979June 14, 2013

I recently picked up a copy of Planting A New Perspective by Piet Oudolf and Noel Kingsbury. It is a wonderful book. I was immediately compelled to search the internet for a source of seed of Stipa pulcherrima after seeing how incredibly delicate and dramatic it is while flowering. My question concerns hardiness. I am in zone 5b-6 and although the grass was listed as a hardy perennial by the seed vendor I am unsure just how hardy this grass is. I don't believe that many species of Stipa are grown in this zone because we are just slightly too cold.
I hope I don't have to resort to growing this grass in a large pot and keeping it in the cold room during the winter. I think it would be much more affective if it were included right in the landscape vs in a pot.

Is anyone growing this grass? I would love to hear about your experiences with it.

A video I found on Youtube


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Jelitto sells the seed, and they call it zones 6-9. I haven't grown this one, but I trust them for their accuracy in plant descriptions.

    Bookmark   June 14, 2013 at 7:09PM
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A dandy alternative to an above-ground container is the pot-in-socket technique.

You bury the socket where you want it, in the garden/landscape. Grow the tender plant in a pot which fits the socket. Pull the pot from the socket for wintering over. Easy-Peasy.

    Bookmark   June 14, 2013 at 7:14PM
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Great suggestion Don. That reminds me of the pot in pot method many nurseries use to grow trees. I think I will probably resort to using this method until I can harvest some seed of my own or divide the plants. Once I have multiple clumps I won't feel so bad if I loose one to a hardiness test.


    Bookmark   June 14, 2013 at 7:19PM
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I use it for annuals, and for growing perennials on.

Use copper-treated spin-out fabric between the two pots, and you'll eliminate a lot of problems with roots growing from the pot through the socket.

    Bookmark   June 14, 2013 at 7:54PM
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