Ribbon Grass Information: Tips For Growing Ornamental Ribbon Grass
What Is Ribbon Grass?
Ribbon grass is a type of perennial herbaceous plant with small leaves and flowers that grows naturally in moist soil. It is one of the most common plants found growing wild along roadsides, ditches, and other open areas. It looks like a bunch of ribbons tied together at the top. It is very easy to grow and it makes a nice addition to any garden.
How To Grow Ribbon Grass
The best way to grow ribbon grass is in well drained soil. You need to provide plenty of water during the summer months when the plants are actively growing. If you do not have enough water, then they will die back in the wintertime.
You can buy ribbon grass seeds from nurseries or online. These seeds will germinate quickly so you don’t have to wait too long before you see your first plants sprouting up. They usually take between 2-3 years for them to reach maturity.
It takes a little bit of time and effort to cultivate ribbon grass but once it’s established, it produces lots of new growth every year.
Ribbon Grass Care
The best way to take care of ribbon grass is to make sure that the soil is not too wet and not too dry at all times. You also need to make sure they are getting the right amount of sunlight or they won’t grow at all.
You can trim off the tips of the plants to make them branch out and look fuller. It’s recommended that you divide the sections every few years to promote new growth as well.
Ribbon grass is a very hardy plant so it’s very unlikely that there will be any pests or diseases that attack it. If this does happen then it’s easy to treat because you can just buy the appropriate pesticide from your local garden center.
How To propagate Ribbon Grass
You can easily grow ribbon grass from seeds. You just have to let them dry out a bit before you put them in soil. You should also only take small parts of the plant to be transplanted or it won’t grow.
It’s important that the soil is well drained and that it doesn’t get too much water. It’s also recommended that you use a pot with drainage holes to prevent the roots from getting too wet.
Things To Consider
You need to make sure that ribbon grass has enough sunlight or else it won’t thrive. Between 6-8 hours of direct sunlight is recommended. If not, the leaves might be a lighter shade of green.
It’s also a good idea to divide the plants every few years so that they grow more vigorously and you have more to transplant if necessary.
You should also prune them back if you want to keep them shorter. This is especially true during winter because the plants can become leggy. Just be sure to not trim off more than 1/3 of the plant at a time.
How To Care For Ribbon Grass In The Winter
The plants will naturally go dormant during winter so there is not much that you really need to do for them. It’s best to leave them alone and just make sure that they aren’t covered by too much snow. You don’t want the plants or roots to get damaged because of moisture.
During the cold months, you should only water them every 3-4 weeks unless it’s really hot outside. Just follow the regular guidelines for watering during the spring and summer.
If you live in an area that gets heavy snowfall, then it’s best to dig down and uncover the crown of the plant. This will allow it to gather more nutrients from the soil which should keep it alive over the winter. Just replace the soil once the snow melts.
It’s best to keep ribbon grass inside during the winter and then outside during the spring and summer. This will ensure that it stays healthy and thriving throughout the year.
Tips For Successful Ribbon Grass Growing
When you’re starting with seedlings instead of seeds, you’ll also want to transplant them into pots and grow them indoors until they’re at least 4 inches tall. They can be planted outside after that.
It’s very important to prune them back every once in awhile. If left unchecked, the plants will become very leggy and unattractive. You should also deadhead the spent flowers regularly to encourage more blooming.
Be careful when you transplant them because the roots don’t like to be disturbed. Dig a hole that’s deep enough for the root ball and carefully remove it from its current container.
It’s usually not a good idea to start with plants, however. They tend to be a bit more expensive and Ribbon Grass is hardy enough that starting with seed is just as easy.
Ribbon Grass is considered to be deer resistant so you don’t need to worry about those types of pests. Just be sure that you water it during droughts and it should do fine.
Where To Get Ribbon Grass Seeds
If you’re interested in growing some ribbon grass for yourself, you can find the seeds online:
Where To Buy Ribbon Grass
If you don’t want to bother growing ribbon grass from seed, then your best bet is to look for a local nursery in your area that sells it. You can also try looking online but you’ll probably have better luck with the former.
Other Types Of Ribbon Flowers
Ribbon Grass might be the most popular type of ribbon flower, but there are plenty of others to choose from. Here are a few:
Sources & references used in this article:
Seasonal changes in the nutritive value of grass species in Spinifex pastures of Western Australia. by AM Holm, RJ Allen – The Rangeland Journal, 1988 – CSIRO
TNC/Phalaris arundinacea From Bugwoodwiki by KE Lyons, J Randall, M Robison, T Morisawa, B Rice… – wiki.bugwood.org
Taylor’s Guide to Ornamental Grasses by R Holmes – 1997 – books.google.com
Monofilament ribbon pile product by JM Faria, RT Wright – US Patent 3,332,828, 1967 – Google Patents
Harvest techniques change annual warm‐season legume forage yield and nutritive value by RM Coughlin – 1991 – Harpercollins