Common name: Pampas Grass
Cortaderia selloana from Argentina is a graceful perennial evergreen grass that is generally grown for its tall white feathery plumes.
They are not totally frost hardy so they should be given a sheltered sunny spot with light loamy soil.
If this is a problem consider growing a plant in a movable container so that plant and container can be moved under cover during the winter months.
Plants can grow to 3metres (10ft) high with a similar spread.
To reduce spread, the plants root system can be cut back around its perimeter and the offcuts transplanted to increase stock.
Select a sheltered sunny spot, and prepare the planting area by digging in organic compost or manure to assure good drainage.
Dig the planting hole big enough to accommodate the root ball.
Soak the plant thoroughly with water before removing it from the container.
If the plant has become somewhat pot bound cut through the roots to loosen them, then spread the roots outward on all sides.
When planting ensure that the crown is set at ground level, add some slow release fertiliser to the backfill material.
Tamp the soil firmly around the plant.
Water the plant and cover the area around it with 75mm (3") mulch.
Water the plant regularly for the first few weeks.
You may find that the plant may not bloom the first year after planting.
Established plants can lifted and divided at this time if more stock is required or there is a need to reduce the plant in size.
Tidy up established by removing dead or damaged leaves and flower stem.
Take care when carrying out this task, the leaves are very sharp, always wear stout gloves.
Water the plant regularly throughout the growing season, more so during dry spells.
Circa Week 35-40:
If required, cut off some spikes for drying and hang upside down in a dry airy space.