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Bamboo Muhly grass

Posted by oriole6 9b (My Page) on
Thu, May 26, 11 at 9:34

I finally found and bought a pot of Muhlenbergia dumosa. It had fine, feathery foliage when I bought it in its 5 gallon container. Now, after it has been in the ground for a couple of months, it has put out lots of new shoots but this new growth is a lot more course... not fine at all. Is this something I can expect as the plant matures, or am I doing something wrong? I hope you can see the difference in foliage in each photo below.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Bamboo Muhly grass

I've never grown this grass, but it sounds like what you see may be flower stalks. Has it flowered yet?


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RE: Bamboo Muhly grass

Hi Donn, no, they don't seem to be flower stalks. Just more grass, but bigger and less feathery. Maybe that's what this type does when taken out of its pot... anyone have any experience with this? I found an old post by the grass guy who said this could be pruned down a few times a year... maybe I'll try that to get the softer stuff!


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RE: Bamboo Muhly grass

This grass is doing what it does. It has large bamboo-like stems that have wider leaves and grow to 5 or 7 feet. I would definitely not cut it. It sounds like you wanted a finer bladed grass and this one seems to be changing its personality on you. If that is the case, you'd be perhaps happier with a Muhlenbergia capillaris, lindheimeri or emersleyi. These have finer blades and keep the even mound type of habit your plant first had.

Maybe you will like it better when it develops its personality. It is considered a very striking and beautiful (BIG) grass.


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RE: Bamboo Muhly grass

Thanks, cactusgarden. I was aware that it would get large, I guess I was just hoping that it would maintain its "bermuda grass gone really wild" look. But I do like it no matter what it does. I like your reference to "developing its personality." That's exactly what it's doing!

~ Robin


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RE: Bamboo Muhly grass

I was going through some native garden photos online last night and I ran across a Southwestern garden and it had 4 or 5 large mature specimens. It was staggeringly beautiful! I haven't been too drawn to this grass but after seeing that I can understand its popularity. I think maybe its hard to do it justice in a photo because none I had seen previously looked that good even thought everything I read says people rave about it when they see it.


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RE: Bamboo Muhly grass

Do you like this. This is the bamboo muhly getting settled in. I grow things hard because I have no water for watering and I am high on a limestone arid hill in Central Texas. This year it had 11" of rain. Normal for us it 30 - 25". Unfortunately this year we had 4 days of 12 degree nights and no rain to speak of since September (5"). It is still alive but it has been happier and is dormant. They say it is a desert grass from northern Mexico, but I hear that it is from desert canyons where it gets protection and gathered water. Descriptions are often deceiving. I love the wind and setting sun ruffling through this grass. I have it under Oak tree but it gets western exposure and eastern also.
Muhlenbergia dumosa in the wind

DSC_0364


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RE: Bamboo Muhly grass

I think your application of it is particularly striking. Just beautiful. Sounds like your conditions are really putting it to the test! Please post occasionally and tell us how it's doing.


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RE: Bamboo Muhly grass

Thank you, you have to imagine this bowing and nodding in the wind. I garden in a less is better manner that is hard on non natives. Only the tough survive. When I have a good year, I buy another 5 plants and add them on the edge and slowly the clump grows. Nothing is being added this year. This year I look out my window and everything is brown.


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RE: Bamboo Muhly grass

It looks like it gets some shade, how much shade will it take? That is absolutely gorgeous! What size plants do you buy for planting??


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RE: Bamboo Muhly grass

Usually I plant out one gallons when they are on sale for 3.99 and sometimes 4" if they are not have a bargain going. . It maters how flush I am and what the local nursery is offering. Yes, it gets some filtered shade. The trees are not tall and dense. I see bamboo muhly in part shade mostly. This does get hit by the sun for short periods at the end and beginning of the day. It does do justice to a mass planting.


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RE: Bamboo Muhly

I forgot to mention that I think I am on the very northern edge of viability for this grass. This winter I will mulch the grass. It was knocked back hard the two last winters. I am Z8b but 8a the last two winters have been hard on it so if you read a hardiness rating of Z7 , do not believe it. Expect to mulch and care for it by placement by a protected spot..


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RE: Bamboo Muhly grass

Here is what this grass looks like with 54 days above 100. (Who's counting?). It was 106 yesterday and 105 today. We have had 5 " of rain since September. The M. dumosa is still alive and it is greener than the bluestem and dropseed around it. I think it will perk up as soon as it see some liquid stuff. GO Tropical storm DAN!!!!! May you travel slow and wet.

Muhlenbergia dumosa

Bamboo muhly in drought of 2011

Muhlenbergia dumosa


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RE: Bamboo Muhly grass

At least it's in the shade.

Good luck with the heat.


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RE: Bamboo Muhly grass

The Bamboo Muhly looks great and I'm going to try it under the trees near the house here.


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RE: Bamboo Muhly grass

It gets shade but the shade is thin. It also gets sun at different times of the day and when late fall gets here the sun streaks right in there. Te trees are not large. I will take pictures if and when it rains and we will see how fast and IF it survives. I have my fingers crossed.


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RE: Bamboo Muhly grass

The bamboo muhly was surging back with the recent rains UNTILL my neighbors 6 COWS GOT OUT for 2 days!! Ferdinand the bull took up residence in the patch right outside our office window. He thought they needed a trimming. One would walk out on the porch and he would shake his horns at us. He was more playful than threatening. They loved the two new mexican feather grass. I saw them rip it out and play catch with it. EEERRRRRR. They are back behind their fence.


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RE: Bamboo Muhly grass

  • Posted by jolj 7b/8a-S.C.,USA (My Page) on
    Sat, Jan 7, 12 at 23:11

I need to know if anyone north of zone 8a has keep this Muhly grass outside year around.
Is there a substitute that is as fine as the Muhly & will grow in zone7.


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RE: Bamboo Muhly grass

I have. Most varieties of Muhly are hardy to zones 5 or 6.


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RE: Bamboo Muhly grass

Most places on the Web rate the hardiness at15f. I have had it go below these last two winters to 13F and it had a hard time bouncing back as I stated above. Some people rate it as Z7 but they are very few. It is a real shocker. Our cold fronts in Texas come in hard and fast with the temps plunging 30 in an hour on the bad snaps, and our plants do not have time to harden off. Other places, winter cold fronts might go down slower so the plants survive better because they can harden off. I have heard some people talk about this in New Mexico. I would say that the hardiness is still ill defined on this species of Muhlenbergia. 10 years ago, the information stated that it was Z9 as in its Native Southern Arizona, so Buyer beware. Pick a southern exposure by a hot rock wall and good drainage. It is definitely more tender than the other Muhlies.

Donn, I thought you said this spring that you had NOT grown M. dumosa yet. Did you get some this summer. I will be interested in how yours makes it through your winter. What your growing conditions were.


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RE: Bamboo Muhly grass

Jolj's question was about Muhly, not specifically M. dumosa. The first thing I think of when I see Muhly is M. capillaris. I still haven't grown M. dumosa.


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RE: Bamboo Muhly grass

I read it as THIS muhly so I thought it was about THIS muhly that we were talking about. It is ambiguous and I did not want her thinking the wrong thing, because it sounded to me that you were saying that you had grown this specific muhly at your home on Long Island. It is confusing and needed straightening out.


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RE: Bamboo Muhly grass

Does anyone still reading this would like to exchange Muhlenbergia dumosa for something else? You can find the plants that I have for trade at daves garden
http://daves
garden.com
/community/trading/list.php?list=have&member=HumbertoD
remove the space between daves


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