Plant FinderPlant Finder Graphic
Pennisetum setaceum ‘Rubrum’
Pennisetum setaceum ‘Rubrum’

Click to Enlarge

Zone
Zones 8-24, 26, 27, 29, H1, H2
Full Sun
Full
Regular WaterMinimal Water
Moderate, Minimal
Pennisetum setaceum ‘Rubrum’
Pennisetum setaceum ‘Rubrum’

Pennisetum setaceum

Fountain Grass
Poaceae (Gramineae)
Annuals, Ornamental grasses and grasslike plants, Perennials

PENNISETUM

Growing in fountainlike mounds, these are among the most graceful of the ornamental grasses. They have long, narrow leaves and arching stems that bear furry, foxtail-like flower plumes in summer, with bloom often extending into fall. Use them in containers, in perennial or shrub borders, or as bank covers.

Pennisetum setaceum

Often grown as an annual in colder climates. From tropical Africa, southwestern Asia, and the Arabian Peninsula. Grows to 5 ft. high and wide. Forms a dense clump of medium green foliage; long plumes of coppery pink or purplish flowers are held within the clump or just above it. Dies back in winter, even in mild climates. Full sun. Can take supplemental irrigation but doesn’t need any. In arid climates, thrives in gravel beds and other dry sites. Thanks to its heavy self-sowing, this species will threaten to crowd out native vegetation when planted near open country; it has become a rampant pest in the Hawaiian Islands. To prevent seeding, cut off flower plumes before seeds mature.

‘Rubrum’ (‘Cupreum’) has purplish red leaves and rose-colored plumes that fade to beige. ‘Eaton Canyon’ (‘Red Riding Hood’) is similar in color but grows to just 1 1/2–2 ft. tall and wide; it is evergreen in frost-free areas. Neither usually sets seed. Some believe that these red-leafed plants belong to another species.

You Might Also Like...

Centaurea cineraria

The common name (dusty miller) is used for many plants with whitish foliage. Perennial, native to Ital...

Washingtonia

These fast-growing fan palms are too tall for most suburban gardens; they are best suited to large pro...

Leucophyllum candidum

Grows to 5 ft. tall and wide, with small, silvery leaves and deep purple flowers. ‘Silver Cloud&...

Find Your Sunset Climate Zone

Find Your Sunset Climate Zone

View Maps Learn More

Advertisement