Totem Pole Switchgrass - Late Summer Update - August 2021
I planted this grass in our front bed earlier this Spring after bringing it home from the Morton Arboretum Spring sale. It is called the Totem Pole Switchgrass. Named: Panicum virgatum Prairie Winds. And, I broke the rule of buying just one of anything, but since this thing was billed to be SO BIG (6' tall) and I wasn't sure where it was going to go, I brought home just one. I ended up sticking it behind the Norway Maple in our front bed. And, that tree has been killing EVERYTHING in sight, so I wasn't sure how this particular grass would do in this spot. I've lost hostas, ligularias and even a hydrangea in this area. So, my fingers were crossed that this would provide a little bit of vertical interest and survive the shallow roots from the tree that seem to out-compete everything else around the tree.
Here, below, is a look at this grass after being in the ground all Summer. It is about three-and-a-half-feet tall and doing decently well. It has put up the showy seed heads, but they haven't turned golden just yet.
I like the way it looks in this spot, especially as you take in the front beds from the sidewalk. It sort of 'plays' with the trunk of the maple tree as you move from one side to the other. If I see this one again, I'll grab a couple more and plant a cluster. Especially if, come Spring, this grass comes back.