Sporobolus heterolepsis care

Asked August 15, 2018, 12:58 PM EDT

Greetings Masters ~

I recently planted a full-sun, parking lot corner with Sporobolus that were a good and healthy size (1 gal); several were blooming. The post-plant bed was spread with Leafgro and then topped with organic mulch They were hand-watered in but also the bed is on an irrigation system.

I'm nervous about dethatching at the right time since this is it's first season. Worried that if I take it back too early it won't survive (I read conflicting information about it). Is it best for me to wait for new growth beforehand? I'm wondering if the crown needs winter protection and therefore I should avoid doing it in December, January or even February...

Many thanks!

Baltimore County Maryland groundcovers ornamental grasses plant care

3 Responses

Your planting of Sporobolus looks great! We are not sure what you mean by dethatching it, as that is a process that is typically done on lawn grasses only. Sporobolus is a warm-season grass. You can prune it at any time after it goes dormant in the fall. Many people will leave it as is (with brown foliage) for winter interest. Then cut it back hard, to about three inches tall, in early spring before the new growth emerges. https://wimastergardener.org/article/prairie-dropseed-sporobolus-heterolepis/


Thanks so much for your reply; I'm thrilled to know you approve of the planting. I had thought the process of pruning back a native grass was called dethatching - probably because I'd seen the term used in articles on Sporobolus - but since reading your answer I realize it's a lawn thing ... glad to have the definition corrected! I researched what to plant here for so long - wanting to find what's most suitable for this spot. I love it when this grass fills in - it's a beautiful sight. Thanks again - you can't imagine how grateful I am to be able to ask questions to your panel (and to read previous posts).

You're very welcome. We agree -- it is a very beautiful native grass. Good choice.