Fountain Grass – Making Sure it Comes Back

Q: I bought some fountain grass even though it was labeled as a tender perennial. What is the best way to make sure it comes back?

A: Common purple fountain grass will come back in South Georgia and Florida but not here.Pennisetum setaceum ‘Rubrum’ rarely survives Atlanta winters. In contrast, the new P. setaceum ‘Prince’ has come back, albeit slowly, in my garden for two years running. My guess is that it would do even better if I kept it indoors in a pot while letting the foliage die down in winter. Garden expert Erica Glasener ( says she’s very impressed with ‘Prince’, ‘Princess’, ‘Princess Caroline’ and ‘Princess Molly’ ornamental fountain grasses in the University of Georgia Trial Gardens.

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