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 Weather Station

Products > Cannomois grandis
Cannomois grandis - Bell Reed

[2nd Image]
Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Grass-like
Family: Restionaceae (Restios)
Origin: South Africa (Africa)
Evergreen: Yes
Flower Color: Brown
Bloomtime: Spring
Synonyms: [Cannomois virgata, Hort.]
Height: 6-8 feet
Width: 4-5 feet
Exposure: Full Sun
Irrigation (H2O Info): Medium Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 20-25 F
Cannomois grandis (Bell Reed) - A beautiful large restio with stout culms rising from rhizomes to 7 feet tall. The stiffly-erect culms have persistent bright reddish-pink sheaths and drooping hair-like foliage. The new growth is particularly showy and male plants have a spectacular inflorescence of hundreds of spherical shiny brown flowers while females produce spindle-shaped spikelets covered with hard bracts. Plant in full sun to light shade. Requires a well-drained acidic soil and regular irrigation. Hardy at least to the mid 20's F. Bell Reed is native to streams or wet mountainous areas of the Cape area of South Africa (from Clanwilliam to Humansdorp) from sea level up to around 5,000 feet. Although this is arguably one of the most stunning of the restios, soil requirements limit this plant to container growing for most locations in California. The common name bell reed or bellreed is a name coined by the cut flower industry for the sprays of small bell-shaped flowers on male plants. Current revision of the genus by Dr. Peter Linder of the University of Zurich indicates that this species will be split into 3 separate species and while this work has yet to be published, the plant currently grown in California nurseries as Cannomois virgata will likely be renamed. The nomenclatural changes being considered would make this taller clumping plant Cannomois grandis while the true Cannomois virgata is a name reserved for a shorter rapidly spreading rhizomatous plant.  The information on this page is based on the research that we have conducted about this plant in the San Marcos Growers library, from what we have found on reliable online sources, as well as from observations made of our crops of this plant growing in the nursery and of plants growing in the nursery's garden and those in other gardens where we may have observed it. We also have incorporated comments received from others and welcome getting feedback from those who may have additional information, particularly if this information includes cultural information that would aid others in growing Cannomois grandis.