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Plant Families / Panicum - Switch Grasses


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Panicum - Switch Grasses

Handsome and reliable, Panicum (Switch Grass) can be annual or perennial, evergreen or deciduous grasses, usually with a dense, columnar habit and stiff round stems. In midsummer, slender flower clusters rise above the foliage, opening into loose, airy clouds of pinkish blossoms. Long-lived, Switch Grasses provide nearly year-round interest, as the plants remain upright throughout the winter. Versatile and easy to grow, they can be massed or planted in groups at the back of perennial borders, in mixed plantings or in prairies and native gardens. They can be used as a focal point, at the edges of ponds or pools or in decorative containers.

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Panicum virgatum 'Cloud Nine' (Switch Grass)

One of the tallest switch grass, Panicum virgatum 'Cloud Nine' forms an erect-stemmed and narrow clump of glaucous blue foliage in spring, which gets topped in mid to late summer with a profusion of finely-textured, airy golden flower panicles which hover over the foliage like an airy cloud. They persist well into fall before eventually turning beige while the foliage warms up to a lovely dark golden shade in the fall.

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Panicum virgatum 'Hanse Herms' (Switch Grass)

Panicum virgatum 'Hanse Herms' is a deciduous, perennial grass of choice. It forms an erect, compact and narrow clump of gracefully arching, steely blue foliage with red-tinged tips that become more conspicuous as the season progresses. Dark red by late summer, the foliage turns vibrant burgundy-red by fall and usually remains attractive in the garden all winter long.

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Panicum virgatum 'Northwind' (Switch Grass)

One of the best vertical varieties of switch grasses, Panicum virgatum 'Northwind' is a deciduous, perennial grass of architectural distinction. It forms a dense, strongly upright, narrow clump of olive-green to blue-green foliage, which gets topped in late summer with a profusion of finely-textured, golden flower spikelets

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Panicum virgatum 'Shenandoah' (Switch Grass)

Sporting one of the best burgundy foliage of all switch grasses, Panicum virgatum 'Shenandoah' is a deciduous, perennial grass of choice. It forms an erect, compact and narrow clump of steely blue-green foliage in spring, which quickly takes on red tones by early summer and turns violet, purple, burgundy and wine-red by early fall.

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Panicum virgatum (Switch Grass)

A stately sight in the landscape, Panicum virgatum (Switch Grass) is a clump-forming perennial grass forming an erect-stemmed and narrow clump of bright green leaves throughout the growing season. In late summer to fall, the foliage is topped with a profusion of finely-textured, reddish-purple flower panicles which hover over the foliage like an airy cloud.

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