Switch Grass

Panicum virgatum 'Heavy Metal' Poaceae

Growth habit



Bioswale Garden, Groundcover Collection

Source of plant

Walters Gardens, North Creek Nurseries, The Plantsmen, Sunny Border Nurseries, Edgewood Nursery


'Heavy Metal' is a switch grass cultivar which features metallic-blue foliage and a columnar form. It is a clump-forming, warm season grass which typically grows in an upright, vertical clump to 3' tall (to 5' when in flower). Stems typically retain vertical form without flopping throughout the growing season and into winter. Features metallic-blue leaves which turn yellow in autumn, fading to tan-beige in winter. Foliage clump is topped in mid-summer by finely-textured, pink-tinged, branched flower panicles which hover over the foliage like an airy cloud. Panicles turn straw-yellow as the seeds mature fading to beige in winter. Seed plumes persist well into winter providing visual interest as well as food for birds.

USDA Hardiness Zone


Special characteristics

notable texture, foliage characteristics, winter interest