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Transplanting Zebra Grass

Posted by tcstoehr Z8 Portland, OR (My Page) on
Fri, Aug 20, 10 at 16:32

I have an established clump of Miscanthus Sinensis that I need to move to a more suitable, prominent, sunny location. I'll probably just take my 18" spade and punch out a 1' by 1' square of it taking roots as deeply as possible.
The question is, when to do this? What time of year would be best. Fall seems good, but I don't know. How about during dormancy in Winter? Or is Spring the best time. Not during Summer I would gather.


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RE: Transplanting Zebra Grass

  • Posted by donn_ 7b, GSB, LI, NY (My Page) on
    Fri, Aug 20, 10 at 17:47

Spring, right after it starts growing again, is the best time. That gives it the longest time to establish itself before winter.

Cutting a 1' square segment out of the middle is not the best idea. Miscanthus tends to 'donut,' that is die out in the middle. The youngest part of the crown is at the outer perimeter of the crown, and you want to use that, rather than the center. When I move established grasses, I divide them. I usually cut out the entire crown, divide it into as many pie-shaped segments as I want, and chop off the pointed inner part..about 1/3 of the length of the segment. This way I'm using the youngest and heartiest part of the crown for the new planting.


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RE: Transplanting Zebra Grass

Spring? Good to know. I would have guessed Fall. I figured I'd just slice it into four quadrants and replant one of them.
I know about the "donutting". I saw a garden show where someone dug out the middle of the clump, going down into the soil, and replaced the soil in the middle. The idea was that the clump would refill into the center. I think I'll just let it grow.


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RE: Transplanting Zebra Grass

  • Posted by donn_ 7b, GSB, LI, NY (My Page) on
    Sat, Aug 21, 10 at 13:57

"I saw a garden show where someone dug out the middle of the clump, going down into the soil, and replaced the soil in the middle. The idea was that the clump would refill into the center."

Very interesting idea, and it should work. I'll have to try that.


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RE: Transplanting Zebra Grass

I have successfully divided grasses in summer and fall here in Portland, including Miscanthus. I have also successfully moved them. It rains so much in spring that I just don't get these chores done then. Our fall is so long and soil so warm it is different here than other areas.

I have dug out the dead middle of a Miscanthus and replanted it with chunks dug out from the edges. I didn't wait for it to refill itself.

I have extra Miscanthus sinensis var. purpurascens that I just divided and also a few others. My few gardening friends are all grassed out. I hate to compost perfectly good grasses and have not had such good luck mailing them to friends in other states.


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