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Panicum virgatum 'Heavy Metal'

Also called Blue Switch Grass


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Photo courtesy of Walters Gardens Inc.

Photo courtesy of Walters Gardens Inc.

More About Panicum virgatum 'Heavy Metal'

  • Forms a very tight, upright, vase-shaped clump of intense metallic-blue foliage
  • This is a strong, upright cultivar that does not flop, even in heavy rains
  • Grass is topped with pink, airy, cloud-like panicles
  • Leaves have a good, yellow, fall colour
  • The foliage and flower turn beige-brown for the winter
  • A good choice for the formal garden
  • Bloom Time: Late summer
  • Flower Height: 150 cm
  • Foliage Height: 120 cm
  • Grass Type: Warm Season

Interesting Notes:

Warm Season Grasses: These grasses are much slower starting in the spring. They do not push new growth until temperatures warm in early to midsummer. They flower later in the summer or fall with most blooms remaining into the winter. Most warm season grasses tolerate heat, humidity and drought; some even thrive in these conditions.

 

Zone:

4

Height:

120-150 cm

Spread:

50-80 cm

Colour:

Pink
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Heavy Metal Switch Grass Growing and Maintenance Tips

This grass grows in a wide variety of soil conditions from wet to average, and is drought tolerant, once established. Grows best in full sun and will flop over if grown in shade or overly rich soils. It should be pruned back to 10 cm above ground level in early spring.


Panicum virgatum 'Heavy Metal' Characteristics

Full Sun
Full Sun
Attracts Birds
Attracts Birds
Deer Resistant
Deer Resistant
Rabbit Resistant
Rabbit Resistant
Cut Flower/Foliage
Cut Flower/Foliage
Drought Tolerant
Drought Tolerant
Long Blooming
Long Blooming
Heat Tolerant
Heat Tolerant
Dried Flower/Foliage
Dried Flower/Foliage
Low Maintenance
Low Maintenance
Salt Tolerant
Salt Tolerant
Rock garden
Rock garden

Soil Moisture

Average to Dry Soils
Well-drained
Moist to Average

Growth Rate

Medium

Attributes

Juglan Tolerant
Fall Color
Deciduous

Flowering Time

Fall
Summer
Lt. Sum-Fall

Habit

Clumping
Upright
Vase-shape

Foliage Color

Gray
Blue

Landscape uses

Foundation planting
Screening (privacy)
Roadside planting
Specimen
Naturalizing

 Suitable Substitutions for Panicum virgatum 'Heavy Metal'

Panicum virgatum 'Northwind'

Panicum virgatum 'Northwind'

Northwind Switch Grass

Elymus arenarius 'Blue Dune'

Elymus arenarius 'Blue Dune'

Blue Dune Lyme Grass