To maintain the health and beauty of ornamental grasses, it may be necessary to divide them every three to four years. When you notice the center of the grass clump dying out, or the plant is taking over your landscape, it’s time to get out your shovel and start digging.

Dividing grasses isn’t complicated.  But there are a few things to know.  Here’s a few tips:

  1. When? The safest time of year to divide grasses is early Spring.  Both cool and warm season grasses will thrive if divided during cooler, wetter weather before major growth cycles begin.  Avoid dividing grasses in the summer time.  Hot temperatures and dry soil are stressful enough for plants.
  2. What do I need? To divide grasses, you will need loppers or pruners, a shovel, gloves, and a little bit of muscle.
  3. How? Wearing gloves is important as some grasses have sharp foliage that can irritate or even cut the skin.
  • First, using loppers or pruners, cut the grasses down to about six inches above the ground.
  • Cut into the surrounding dirt a few inches beyond the plant to make a circle around the plant.
  • Using your shovel, lift and pry the root ball gently out of the hole.
  • Use your shovel to chop the root ball in half (or if the root ball is large enough, three or more large chunks).
  • Plant one of your new, smaller clumps of grass back in the hole if desired. The new pieces can be replanted elsewhere.

Ornamental grasses are a beautiful way to enhance your landscape.  Grasses are low maintenance, hardy, and come in a variety of heights, textures, and colors.  If your current landscape needs a refresh, call Hoosier Landscape Group to start creating the outdoor space of your dreams!

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