Alphabetical Plant Listing

Pennisetum alopecuroides 'Red Head' (Fountain Grass)

Fountain Grass 'Red Head', Foxtail Grass 'Red Head', Chinese Fountain Grass 'Red Head'


Pennisetum alopecuroides 'Red Head' (Fountain Grass) is a charming perennial grass forming a dense clump of gracefully arching linear leaves. Deep green in summer, they turn gold in the fall before fading to buff in winter. In mid to late summer, showy smoky, dark red, bottlebrush flowers resembling large foxtails are produced above the leaves. They arch outward from the foliage clump and are particularly dramatic when backlit. They make excellent cut flowers for fresh and dried arrangements. Requiring very little care and providing almost nonstop drama in the garden, this compact warm season grass is excellent for groundcover massing but also can be used as an accent plant in gardens and in containers.

  • Recipient of the prestigious Award of Garden Merit of the Royal Horticultural Society.
  • Grows up to 3-4 ft. tall (90-120 cm) and 2-3 ft. wide (60-90 cm).
  • Performs best in full sun. Tolerates part shade, but best flower production occurs in full sun. Although it prefers fairly dry soils and is drought tolerant once established, it also grows in moist, but well-drained soils.
  • Welcomed in any garden style, it is versatile and can be used as a specimen plant, in groups or en masse. It is ideal in beds and borders where it provides texture, color and contrast, great in naturalistic prairies and meadows and absolutely lovely beside ponds or streams where its graceful form is reflected in the water.
  • No serious pest or disease issues. Deer resistant!
  • Cut back old foliage to the ground in late winter.
  • Propagate by division in spring.

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Requirements

Hardiness 5 – 9
Heat Zones 6 – 9
Climate Zones 2B, 3, 3A, 3B, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24
Plant Type Ornamental Grasses
Plant Family Pennisetum - Fountain Grasses
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Mid,Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Height 3' – 4' (90cm – 120cm)
Spread 2' – 3' (60cm – 90cm)
Spacing 36" (90cm)
Water Needs Average
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Chalk, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained, Well-Drained
Characteristics Dried Arrangements, Cut Flowers, Plant of Merit, Showy
Tolerance Deer, Drought, Wet Soil
Attracts Birds
Garden Uses Banks and Slopes, Beds and Borders, Patio and Containers, Ponds and Streams
Garden Styles Coastal Garden, Informal and Cottage, Modern Garden

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Tracy Immordino, Shutterstock

While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.


Requirements

Hardiness 5 – 9
Heat Zones 6 – 9
Climate Zones 2B, 3, 3A, 3B, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24
Plant Type Ornamental Grasses
Plant Family Pennisetum - Fountain Grasses
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Mid,Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Height 3' – 4' (90cm – 120cm)
Spread 2' – 3' (60cm – 90cm)
Spacing 36" (90cm)
Water Needs Average
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Chalk, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained, Well-Drained
Characteristics Dried Arrangements, Cut Flowers, Plant of Merit, Showy
Tolerance Deer, Drought, Wet Soil
Attracts Birds
Garden Uses Banks and Slopes, Beds and Borders, Patio and Containers, Ponds and Streams
Garden Styles Coastal Garden, Informal and Cottage, Modern Garden

Great Plant Combination Ideas with Pennisetum - Fountain Grasses

Guides with Pennisetum - Fountain Grasses

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