How to Grow Weeping Lovegrass

The beauty of weeping lovegrass shows where it gets its name. image by Forest & Kim Starr, U.S. Geological Survey, Bugwood.org

Overview

Used for erosion control on slopes and disturbed soils and used as an ornamental grass, weeping lovegrass, also known as African love grass, is easy to maintain. Found in the southern states of the United States, in zones 7 to 10, weeping lovegrass enjoys the warmth of summer and a mild cold in winter. A successful weeping lovegrass plant typically takes up a 3-by-3-foot space, with its drooping leaves giving it its "weeping" characteristic.

Starting with Seeds

Step 1

Prepare a seedbed for your seeds by plowing or tilling the area where you want to control erosion or renew growth. Using 3 to 5 lbs. of seed per acre, plant your seeds ¼ inch deep on silt loams or ½ to 1 inch deep if you have more sandy soil.

Step 2

Lightly water your seedbed daily to maintain a moist soil. Regular watering should continue for the first four weeks; after that, weekly watering should be sufficient to keep the seedlings growing.

Step 3

Keep any grazing livestock away from your seedlings as they grow. While some wildlife will be inclined to investigate this edible plant, the success of your weeping lovegrass will depend on keeping grazers out of the area.

Starting with Containers

Step 1

Select an area for ornamental lovegrass that has good drainage and is partly shaded and partly sunny. Light-textured soils tend to show better performance in plant growth, so add organic matter, such as compost or garden soil, if necessary to break up compact soils.

Step 2

Dig a hole at least 3 feet wide and as deep as the container.

Step 3

Remove the plant gently from the container and set it into the hole. The top of the root ball should come even with ground level. Fill in the hole with the disturbed soil and any mixtures of organic material.

Step 4

Water the plant well. Continue to monitor and water it weekly over the growing season. Regular water will keep the grass from drying out and will give a more lush and appealing look to the plant.

Tips and Warnings

  • The lower temperatures of winter can force lovegrass to act as an annual and not come back in the spring. Ask at your local garden center for information about how successful weeping lovegrass is for your region before you invest in it.

Things You'll Need

  • Plow or tiller
  • Weeping lovegrass seeds or container plants
  • Water source or irrigation system
  • Shovel
  • Organic material, if needed

References

  • USDA Fact Sheet
  • Nevada Gardener's Guide; Linn Mills and Dick Post; 2005
Keywords: weeping lovegrass, african love grass, ornamental grass

About this Author

Writing from Virginia, Margaret Telsch-Williams specializes in personal finance, money management, gardening, crafts and sewing, cooking, DIY projects and travel. When not writing instructional articles online, she works for the website Widescreen Warrior as a contributor and podcast co-host discussing all things film and entertainment. She holds a Bachelor of Science in biology and a master's degree in writing.

Photo by: Forest & Kim Starr, U.S. Geological Survey, Bugwood.org