Posted by Brent Wilson on 7/16/2016 to Fertilizing & Watering Tips
Miscanthus grasses area very easy to grow and care for. There are many Miscanthus varieties of various shapes and sizes but they all like the same conditions.
Here's a breakdown of what you need to know regarding feeding and watering Miscanthus grasses...
Feeding Miscanthus Grasses
Unlike many other ornamental grasses that require little if any fertilizer, Miscanthus grass will do better with fertilization. That being said, too much fertilizer can lead to "flopping." Therefore, we recommend feeding Miscanthus grass only one time a year in late winter or early spring with a mild organic plant food.
Miscanthus grasses thrive in an acid to mildly alkaline soil ranging from 5.5 to 7.5 on the pH scale. Most average garden soils fall between a pH range of 6.0 to 7.0, meaning there usually isn't a pH concern regarding Miscanthus.
Testing Soil pH Soil pH is a measurement of the alkalinity or acidity of soil and is measured on a scale of 1-14, with 7 as the neutral mark. Any measurement below 7 indicates acid soil conditions, and anything above 7 indicates alkaline. If you're unsure about the pH of your soil, or suspect your soil is not suitable for growing Miscanthus grass, it's a good idea to test the soilpH in the planting area. You can quickly test soil pH with an inexpensive soil pH tester probe. To raise the pH (make more alkaline) you can add pelletized limestone to the soil. To lower the pH (make more acid) you can apply Soil Sulfur, Aluminum Sulfate, or Chelated Iron. Adding organic compost to the soil or using compost as mulch can also help to increase acidity and maintain acid soil conditions.
Learn More: What is Soil pH and How To Adjust It?
Watering Miscanthus Grasses
When established, Miscanthus grasses are quite drought tolerant. That said, they will appreciate moisture when young and establishing a root system. As with many other ornamental plants, Miscanthus grasses do not like constantly soggy soil, which can lead to root rot and other plant diseases.
At Planting Time
Immediately after planting deep soak the soil in the planting area, including the rootball, to a depth equal to the height of the root ball. For an extra boost, you can water your newly planted Miscanthus grass with a solution of Root Stimulator, which stimulates early root formation and stronger root development. Root Stimulator reduces plant shock and promotes greener, more vigorous plants.
During the First Active Growth Season
In average garden soil you should not have to water your newly planted Miscanthus grass every day. More often than not, this causes soggy soil conditions that can lead to root rot and other harmful plant diseases. In the absence of sufficient rainfall, water only as needed to keep the rootball and surrounding soil damp to moist. Keep in mind that deep soaking less frequently, allowing the soil to dry out somewhat before watering again, is much better than splashing just a little water on the plants every day. Shrubs planted during the winter dormant season, when plants are not actively growing and evaporation is much slower, will require much less water. So, be extra careful not to overwater during winter!
When established, Miscanthus grasses are drought tolerant plants. Only during prolonged periods of summer drought will plants require supplemental irrigation.
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