Imperata cylindrica Rubra
Japanese Blood Grass.
An attractive grass with narrow yellow-green leaves tipped with red in spring, by mid-summer the whole leaf is glowing red. It grows to a Height of 45cm, and a Spread of 30cm. It will thrive and give it’s best colour in full sun. A frost hardy plant. Dies back in winter re growing each year.
Imperata cylindrica Rubra, commonly known as Japanese Blood Grass or Cogon Grass, is a stunning ornamental plant that adds a touch of vibrant red to gardens and landscapes. With its striking appearance and unique growth habit, it has become a popular choice for gardeners seeking to create eye-catching displays.
Imperata cylindrica Rubra is a native to Southeast Asia. Imperata cylindrica Rubra is a perennial grass species that belongs to the Poaceae family. It is named for its blood-red foliage, which develops during the summer months, intensifying as the season progresses. The plant forms dense clumps of slender, upright stems that can reach a height of around 2 to 3 feet (60 to 90 cm). The leaves are long and narrow, and as they mature, they transition from green to vivid red, creating a dramatic contrast in the garden.
One of the standout features of Imperata cylindrica Rubra is its ability to change color throughout the year. In spring, the foliage emerges green, gradually transforming to burgundy or red as temperatures rise. During the summer, the red coloration intensifies, reaching its peak in late summer and early Autumn. This natural color progression adds visual interest and dynamic appeal to the garden.
Cultivating Imperata cylindrica Rubra is relatively straightforward, making it suitable for both beginner and experienced gardeners. It thrives in full sun to partial shade, preferring well-drained soil. While it can tolerate a range of soil conditions, it tends to perform best in moist, fertile soils. Regular watering is essential to keep the plant hydrated, especially during dry periods. Adequate moisture helps maintain the vibrant red coloration and promotes healthy growth.
Japanese Blood Grass is a low-maintenance plant once established. It has moderate drought tolerance and can withstand some degree of neglect. However, to keep it looking its best, regular care is recommended. It is important to remove any dead or damaged foliage periodically to maintain the plant’s neat appearance. Additionally, dividing clumps every few years can help control its spread and rejuvenate the plant.
In terms of design, Imperata cylindrica Rubra is highly versatile. Its striking red foliage makes it an ideal choice for creating focal points, borders, or mass plantings. It pairs well with other ornamental grasses, such as Pennisetum or Miscanthus varieties, as well as with flowering perennials and shrubs. The vivid coloration of Japanese Blood Grass creates a bold contrast against greenery and complements a wide range of garden styles, from contemporary to cottage gardens.
While Imperata cylindrica Rubra is a beautiful addition to any garden, it is essential to note that it can continue to spread. It is advisable to plant it in containers or use physical barriers, such as edging or deep planting, to prevent its spread.
Imperata cylindrica Rubra, with its striking red foliage and graceful growth habit, is a captivating garden plant that adds drama and visual interest to any landscape or garden. Its ease of cultivation and low-maintenance nature make it an attractive choice for both novice and experienced gardeners. With proper care and management, this ornamental grass can be enjoyed for its vibrant beauty and unique characteristics.