Northern Pampas Grass is one tough plant that resembles the very popular but tender pampas grass (Cortaderia selloana) that will not live in northern climates. While it is sold as a substitute, do understand the flower is not as large or as white as the southern plant.
Grow Saccharum ravennae successfully is best done in damp soils with decent fertility.
I’ve tried growing this plant on drier soils and it didn’t grow well or survive over winter both times I tried in in these locations.
Full sun is best although it will tolerate part shade.
It’s mature height is 6-8 feet of coarse green leaves with a taller flower spike of muddy white.
It is hardy to USDA zone 4/5 and hardier if happy in damp or boggy areas.
Propagating Northern Pampas Grass
By division in the early spring is best. It will self sow if happy.
This grass is best used in a large bog area where it can be allowed to grow into a massive clump. It is not well-suited for smaller gardens where its size will quickly overpower nearby plants.
The muddy color of the fall blooms isn’t outstanding and it degrades into a clumpish “look” when it sets seed. It’s not a plant I’d have at the top of the list in my garden although it works nicely in damp areas where few other tall things will grow.
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