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Products > Pennisetum 'Fireworks' PP18,504
Pennisetum 'Fireworks' PP18,504 - Fireworks Fountain Grass

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Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Grass
Family: Poaceae (Gramineae) (Grasses)
Origin: Africa, Central (Africa)
Evergreen: Yes
Red/Purple Foliage: Yes
Variegated Foliage: Yes
Flower Color: Burgundy
Bloomtime: Summer
Synonyms: [P. x advena 'Fireworks', Cenchrus cupreus]
Parentage: (sport of P. setaceum x P. macrostachys)
Height: 3-4 feet
Width: 2-4 feet
Exposure: Full Sun
Irrigation (H2O Info): Low Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 20-25 F
Pennisetum 'Fireworks' PP18,504 (Fireworks Fountain Grass) - A showy upright growing warm season grass to 3 to 4 feet tall with leaf blades variegated with longitudinal narrow stripes of white, green and burgundy, imparting a candy-cane-like appearance to the new foliage. As with the typical red fountain grass (Pennisetum x advena 'Rubrum') it has purple tassels that in summer rise above the foliage. The variegation fades in bright light and through the season making the variegation a little harder to see but keeping the overall color of the foliage lighter than red fountain grass. This grass, like the parent plant, has remained evergreen for us in mild winters but goes deciduous with frost and be root hardy to around 20 F. Others have observed it to be semi-evergreen and it certainly is most vibrant with new flushes, so cutting back in late winter likely is best to maintain a neat and showy plant. Plant in full sun and water sparingly to control height but even when well irrigated remains a bit smaller than the non-variegated red fountain grass. This plant was discovered by Ron Strasko as a culm sport on Pennisetum 'Rubrum' at his Creek Hill Nursery in Leola, Pa. in 2004 and received US Plant Patent 18,504 in February 2008. The parent plant has been referred to as a Pennisetum setaceum cultivar based on it being a sport of the commonly cultivated Red Fountain Grass which is usually listed as Pennisetum setaceum 'Rubrum' but is actually itself a hybrid between Pennisetum setaceum and P. macrostachys which has been referred as Pennisetum x advena. See our listing for Red Fountain Grass for more information on this hybrid parent plant. Though not yet listed as such in all nomenclatural databases, recent treatment of the genus Pennisetum has all species included in the genus Cenchrus with Pennisetum setaceum now called Cenchrus setaceus and Pennisetum macrostachys called Cenchrus elegans and this hybrid now renamed to Cenchrus cupreus making this cultivars valid name Cenchrus cupreus 'Fireworks'. Until such time as these new names become recognized in the horticultural trades, we have decided to continue to list this plant as Pennisetum x advena 'Fireworks.  The information on this webpage is based on research conducted about this plant in our nursery library, from online sources, as well as from observations made of it as it grows in the nursery in containers, in the nursery's garden and in other gardens where we have observed it growing. We will also incorporate 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  Pennisetum 'Fireworks' PP18,192.