Panicum Virgatum Heavy Metal Grasses
Panicum virgatum Heavy Metal (Switch Grass)
Probably the best know variety of Switch Grass grown for its handsome, neat columns of steely blue-grey (purple tinted) foliage. Numerous purple-pink flower stems bearing many tiny spikelets appear late in the season, almost like a cloud over the plant. Late in the season the whole plant turns to colourful yellow hues.
A really useful plant to add height to a sunny border, the unusual colour of this grass lends itself to many possibilities of contrast with the flowers and foliage in a mixed border and they look great planted with other grasses.
Grow Panicum Heavy Metal in a sunny spot, any well drained soil.
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Panicum Heavy Metal is a deciduous grass, the old foliage should be left over the Winter as this will protect the crown of the plant from inclement weather conditions and will still provide structure and interest, especially on frosty days. Cut them back close to the ground in February or March before the new foliage emerges. The cut stems and foliage is useful as a natural mulch or may be composted.
How to grow Panicum Heavy Metal
Position: Full Sun
Foliage: Deciduous grass, foliage turns to brown in Winter, fresh new foliage emerges in spring.
Soil and site: Any well drained soil.
Flowering time: late Summer
Growth rate: Moderate/fast
Ultimate height and spread: up to 150cm x 75cm.
Hardiness: Fully Hardy
Aftercare: Water regularly after planting and through the first season until established. Cut to ground level in Early Spring.