Cutting Back Ornamental Grasses


Ornamental grasses in the landscape need to be cut down each year in late winter or early spring for the best growth and appearance. This should be done before the plants produce new growth in the spring. Grasses are cut back to expose the crowns to sun-light, to reduce the spread of seeds, and to eliminate habitat for undesirable animals and insects. Leaving ornamental grasses standing through the winter adds winter character to the landscape and helps protect the crowns.



  • Garden shears or pruning shears
  • Power hedge trimmer or weed eater
  • Strong tape, twine, or bungee cords
  • Long-sleeved shirt and gloves


  • Bundle stems of individual plants with tape or twine to make it simpler to clean up the land-scape.
  • Cut back to a height of 4 to 6 inches.
  • For very large areas, such as urban prairies, mowing or burning (if allowed) may be the best option.
Miscanthus In Seed
Miscanthus In Seed