Maintaining Ornamental Grasses in Xeriscape

Discussion in 'Gardening for Water Conservation' started by gardenart, Aug 31, 2007.

  1. gardenart

    gardenart Member

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    In my xeriscaped garden, I have planted an ornamental grass that I discovered can be invasive. I think if I trimmed it to the ground when it produces seed heads in the late summer, it could be controlled. Any ideas on a tool that would cut the grass clump at the base, and doesn't require too much bending by the gardener (me)? String edgers don't work, the grass just flops over.
     
  2. Dave-Florida

    Dave-Florida Active Member

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    Hedge shears could work, if they're sharp, to get rid of seedheads.
     
  3. lorax

    lorax Rising Contributor

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    Well, an industrial weed-whacker, such as a Stihl, with metal blades, does spring to mind...

    Other than this, Lee Valley-Veritas sells some really excellent grass shears. Unfortunately, you'll have to bend down to do this. Or, as Dave in FL suggests, just cut off the seedheads as they appear. You shouldn't even need hedge shears to do this, just a robust pair of scissors.

    Out of curiousity, what species of grass did you plant?
     
  4. gardenart

    gardenart Member

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    Thanks for the suggestion, lorax. I'm not sure I did plant it, though I have a tag for Festuca Glauca (Blue Fescue), though it's not blue. The people across the street have some in pots, and I think it may be a volunteer from that. It has now seeded itself in a third of my front yard. It's a very feathery, tawny, and is about 1 1/2 feet high. It starts to clump at the top, and mesh together, in mid summer. That's when I think it puts on seed heads. I see it planted in formal areas around here too. It may be that its simply not suitable for a xeriscape area. where anything that isn't cut regularly will take root.
     
  5. M. D. Vaden

    M. D. Vaden Active Member 10 Years

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    I use sharp hedge shears.

    Just shove one tip through and get a little bit at a time.

    If one person can pull on the grass a little, it will sever even easier like how sting cuts easier when pulled tight.
     
  6. gardenart

    gardenart Member

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    Thanks, that may be one way to handle it. I'll try it soon.
     

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