decorative grasses

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by scottishmaximus, Dec 12, 2003.

  1. scottishmaximus

    scottishmaximus LawnSite Senior Member
    from ohio
    Posts: 286

    what are basic rules on trimming decorative grasses? I have seen some not come back the next year possibly because they were cut too short. Do they have to be cut back? Seems pretty standard around here. Also, is there a particular way to trim black eyed susans back. Thanks
     
  2. Lance720

    Lance720 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 54

    What I as taught was if a grass is evergreen comb the dead grass out in the spring and if not cut it back. That being said I'm sure there is exceptions to every rule.
    Lance
     
  3. KenH

    KenH LawnSite Bronze Member
    from CT
    Posts: 1,622

    We leave it up to the customer. Some like the 'dead' look in the winter, so we leave them until spring. Others cant stand that look, so we cut them in the fall.

    Alot of people forget you should also be splitting the grasses every few years.
     
  4. Grassmechanic

    Grassmechanic LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,697

    As KenH said. Black-eyed Susans can be cut back to the ground after the leaves have died off.
     
  5. olderthandirt

    olderthandirt LawnSite Platinum Member
    from here
    Posts: 4,900

    scottishmaximus, where you located in Oh? And the grass, we cut it down, and in my opion I'd like to pour round-up all over them after its cut LOL

    Mac
     
  6. NCSULandscaper

    NCSULandscaper Banned
    Posts: 1,557

    There are a few grasses that are considered annual grasses. Which means the cold weather will kill them off and will not come back. I usually prune grasses back in feb or early march roughly 6 inches or a tad bit more above the ground depending on the grass type.
     
  7. mdvaden

    mdvaden LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,946

    Some people cut blue fescue. I prefer to leave them alone until they look bad, then replace.

    Several Carex look good if not cut back.

    Miscanthus, the tall grass Maiden Grass, can be cut from Nov. to Feb.. I like the golden color in fall. It starts to shed about the start of Dec. and that can look worse in a new landscape. Now that our landscape is gaining a "wooded" look, some shedded material on the ground does not look the same.
     
  8. Critical Care

    Critical Care LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,654

    Ahh, I agree mdvaden. We share the same types of grass out here. I try to guess as to what the client wants. I too like the golden color in fall for the miscanthus, but understand that they should be cut down to the ground. Sort of like butterfly bushes and some other shrubs that should be cut back to the ground each year... I don't always do it.
     
  9. scottishmaximus

    scottishmaximus LawnSite Senior Member
    from ohio
    Posts: 286

    olderthandirt, i am from cincy. I don't think that the customer would like the round up idea though. Some decorative grasses seem to be placed in bad spots and should be killed off.

    Thanks everyone for the posts.


    "As KenH said. Black-eyed Susans can be cut back to the ground after the leaves have died off."

    Just for clarification, does this mean to cut back the whole plant or just the dead flowers. The leaves are still green on mine.
     
  10. Grassmechanic

    Grassmechanic LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,697

    If the leaves are still green, I'd cut back just the dead flowers. Then, after the leaves die back (usually after a good freeze) you can cut back the leaves, if you wish.
     

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