Botanical Name: Muhlenbergia capillaris
Common Name: Pink Muhly grass
Description: Beautiful, fast-growing, Florida native ornamental grass that blooms pink fluffy plumes in the Fall. This easy to grow grass likes sun or part sun areas in your garden, meadow, or prairie. It adapts to both dry or moist areas, so it can be put in your rain garden, meadow or prairie, and your regular garden environment. Is drought tolerant after established, but looks best with regular water. Will get 2-4′ tall and wide with the plumes about a foot taller. Its slender leaves/stems turns brown in the winter, which to me is a pretty architectural statement on its own. Cut it to just above the ground in early February to keep it from sprawling too much. Is deer resistant. The flower plumes fade to tan seed plumes during the winter, which feed the birds. Muhly grass attracts lady bugs, which puts it in the category for your Integrated Pest Management plants. Muhly grass forms a low canopy that small animals can use for shelter and refuge.
It occurs naturally in coastal grasslands, hammocks and strands, beach dunes, sandhills and pine flatwood. Its clumping habit provides excellent cover for wildlife. Likes to grow in clay, lime rock, and sandy soils.
Tolerant of occasional/brief inundation of salt water flooding such as can occur in storm surges. Mildly tolerant of salty wind and spray.
This plant in 1-gallon containers is 1-2′ tall.
This plant in 3-gallon containers is 2-3′ tall.
Plant Lore: The genus name Muhlenbergia honors German-American amateur botanist Gotthilf Heinrich Ernst Muhlenberg (1753-1815). The species epithet capillaris is from the Latin capillus, or “hair,” and aris, which means “of or pertaining to.” It may refer to the fine, hairlike appearance of the inflorescence or the capillary- or tube-like form of the panicle branches or leaves.
Florida Hardiness Zones 8 – 10