Canada wildrye, native to Missouri, is an ornamental bunch grass. It reaches heights of 3 to 5 feet and is an ornamental well into winter, even after the grass itself has died. Small green flowers adorn tall spikes which sway in the breeze attractively. Planted primarily in prairies, it is also suited to border and bed planting in the home landscape. It does self-seed readily, so is not suited to mixed planting with other plant varieties and must be maintained yearly so it doesn't overtake neighboring beds.
Prepare the seed 2 months before expected planting in either late fall or early spring. Wrap the seeds in a damp paper towel and place in a plastic bag. Store the bag in a refrigerator for 60 days before planting.
Remove weeds from the planting area completely and loosen the top 4 inches of soil with a tiller. Remove any large rocks or other debris from the area.
Sow seeds ½ inch deep and space the plants 5 inches apart. Sow three to five seeds to a planting hole as not all seeds will germinate.
Keep the soil moist but not soaking wet through spring and summer. Allow plants to die back naturally in late summer.
Apply a phosphorus fertilizer every spring beginning in the second year. Don't apply fertilizer the first year.
Remove all the dead wildrye plant material in spring before the plant begins actively growing. Mow or cut down with shears.