The Morning Light Maiden Grass, otherwise known as the Miscanthus Sinensis ‘Morning Light’ or Maiden Grass ‘Morning Light’, Eulalia ‘Morning Light’, Chinese Silver Grass ‘Morning Light’, Japanese Silver Grass ‘Morning Light’, is a rather well known ornamental grass plant by gardening enthusiasts around the world.
Best known for its low maintenance and moderate growth, this ornamental grass will likely liven up your house (or garden) with its variegated colored leaves. But, only if you learn how to take proper care of it for it to thrive.
This is why all the topics you need to know in order to achieve this will be covered in this Morning Light Maiden Grass Care Guide. Ready? Let’s go!
In order to take proper care of your Morning Light Maiden Grass you’ll need to keep in mind the following guidelines:
- Water: The Morning Light Maiden Grass prefers constant watering each week and more during the hot season.
- Light: Keep your Miscanthus Sinensis ‘Morning Light’ in an environment where it can receive partial to full sun on a daily basis.
- Soil: Make sure to keep the Morning Light Maiden Grass in soil with moist but well draining properties, so ideally, one that is made of clay, loam, chalk, and sand.
And as with many other plants, these are the only three care factors you need to remember to make sure your Morning Light Maiden Grass is, for the most part, healthy and well to survive.
Description and Botanical Aspects
In botanical terms, the Morning Light Maiden Grass belongs to the Poaceae family, the genus Miscanthus and the species Sinensis, hence its scientific (or botanical) name Miscanthus Sinensis ‘Morning Light’ (mis-KAN-thus sin-EN-sis).
Other common Poaceae species include Phyllostachys Aurea, Avalanche Feather Reed Grass, Panicum ‘Hanse Herms’, Baccharis Magellanica, Round-Leaved Beech, Virginia Bluebells, Geum X Heldreichii ‘Georgenberg’, Korean Feather Reed Grass, Arundinaria nitida, Calamagrostis X Acutiflora ‘Karl Foerster’, Golden Japanese Forest Grass and Japanese Silver Grass ‘Strictus’.
As with other Miscanthus’s, the Morning Light Maiden Grass is a herbaceous plant, which means it will die back to the ground every year.
|Name||Morning Light Maiden Grass (Miscanthus Sinensis ‘Morning Light’)|
|Watering||2 to 3 times per week|
|Light||Light shade to full sun|
|Temperature||From winter tempeatures up to 80° F|
|Pruning||Once per year during late winter or early spring|
The Miscanthus Sinensis is native to eastern Asia.
You might be wondering why your Morning Light Maiden Grass’s native region is important. Well, if you know where your plant originally came from, you’ll know which environment conditions it prefers, and with it, knowledge on how to replicate it at home.
With this in mind, the Miscanthus Sinensis ‘Morning Light’ will be most used to the heat zones in the 1 – 9 region, as the plant hardiness level falls between 5a, 5b, 6b, 6a, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9b, 9a and the ideal climate zone is between 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24.
Growth and Size
In terms of size and growth, the Morning Light Maiden Grass is a relatively moderate grower, which makes things somewhat easy for any plant enthusiast.
But what exactly does this mean for your Morning Light Maiden Grass? How large a pot should you consider, how tall, how wide can it get? Let’s jump in…
How tall does morning maiden grass grow?
The Miscanthus Sinensis ‘Morning Light’ can grow up to 4′ – 6′ tall and 3′ – 4′ (90cm – 120cm) wide.
These dimensions make the Morning Light Maiden Grass a relatively large ornamental grass compared to others, so it’s best to keep this fact in mind since it will affect where you want to keep yours at home.
Also, expect it to grow in a wonderful narrow shape, which is something worthwhile to remember when making your garden landscape plans.
This is why experts recommend keeping an area of approximately 48″ – 72″ (120cm – 180cm) free so the Morning Light Maiden Grass can spread to its best extent.
In terms of watering, the Morning Light Maiden Grass is a fairly simple plant to take care of. This is mostly because it has a straightforward watering schedule and somewhat regular watering needs.
Specifically, most experts agree that the Miscanthus Sinensis ‘Morning Light’ prefers constant watering each week and more during the hot season.
Which is why it is considered a plant with relatively average needs in terms of water.
As a rule of thumb, you should remember to keep your Morning Light Maiden Grass in soil with moist but well-draining to well draining characteristics, as these will guarantee the right conditions for your plant to grow and thrive.
When you consider this, this is why you should aim to choose soil that has good drainage properties to keep the right moisture levels at all times.
However, in our experience, the best solution to knowing the right amount of water for your Morning Light Maiden Grass is with the ‘thumb’ technique. Basically, you insert your finger into the soil, and based if you feel the soil moist or dry, you determine if it needs any water, which is the most appropriate way to go about watering your leafy friend.
As mentioned earlier, the Morning Light Maiden Grass prefers to have soil with good drainage properties at all times, reason why you need to make the soil mix out of clay, loam, chalk, and sand.
This is why most experts agree that the Morning Light Maiden Grass requires soil with clay, loam (silt), and sand, which will give you the right conditions it needs.
In addition to this, expert gardeners recommend having preferably alkaline, acid or neutral soil.
Light and Exposure
In terms of light & exposure, the Morning Light Maiden Grass requires partial to full sun in order for it to thrive under the right conditions.
Most experts agree that this ornamental grass will do well as long as you keep it in partial to full sun, and it will be able to grow properly.
Specifically, we recommend that you place your Miscanthus Sinensis ‘Morning Light’ in little to partial shade (only 2-6 hours of direct sunlight a day), to full and direct sun (more 6 hours of direct sunlight per day).
Being a herbaceous plant, the Morning Light Maiden Grass will die back to the ground every year. But, you can expect it to have its ‘prime-time’ during the summer (late), the fall, and during the winter.
You can expect your Morning Light Maiden Grass to flower around the summer and in the fall months from July to September (summer), and from October to December (fall).
The Morning Light Maiden Grass produces some beautiful red, or brown/copper and cream/tan flowers around this time of year.
The leaves from the Morning Light Maiden Grass have a beautiful variegated color during most of the year.
You can expect the leaves from your Miscanthus Sinensis ‘Morning Light’ to be around (> 6 inches) in size.
Attracts, Tolerance and Resistance
The Morning Light Maiden Grass is well known for being able to attract birds, so keep that in mind when choosing your plant, as you’ll likely end up finding one or another in your garden.
Additionally, it has a special tolerance for salt, dry soil, drought and animals like rabbit and deer, so don’t worry if any of these come along, your Miscanthus Sinensis ‘Morning Light’ will be fine.
How should you then organize your garden to include your new Morning Light Maiden Grass? Here are some recommendations by expert gardeners.
Most Miscanthus Sinensis ‘Morning Light’ owners agree that this ornamental grass will look great in most contemporary and rustic gardens of all types.
Other owners consider that they complement well most gardens of modern garden, coastal garden, informal and cottage, and in prairie and meadow styles.
In particular, the Morning Light Maiden Grass’s best location within your garden is in beds and borders, and in hedges and screens, others use it for landscaping in a erosion control, wildlife garden, border, cutting garden, urban garden, mass planting, container, coastal exposure, or a woodland garden.
Morning Light Maiden Grass’s do well with some other plants beside it. One good companion plant is the Physocarpus, which will pair up nicely with your leafy friend.
Others consider that a nice Juniperus will work well too, so choose whichever you find works best for you!
Even though we covered a lot of care information for your Morning Light Maiden Grass, remember the basics: sunlight, soil and water, as these should be enough to grow a healthy plant at home.
Is Morning Light Maiden Grass a perennial?
Yes, the Morning Light Maiden Grass is a perennial. It’s an herbaceous perennial, meaning that it dies back to the ground each winter and regrows from its roots in the spring. It is a popular ornamental grass because of its graceful arching stems and soft light green foliage.
Is the Morning Light Grass invasive?
Yes, it is classified as invasive in many areas of North America. It has a tendency to spread quickly and choke out other vegetation.
Morning Light Grass can be controlled with frequent mowing or herbicide applications; however, these measures should be taken before the grass spreads too widely. If you are troubled by morning light grass on your property, contact your local county extension office for help in identifying and controlling this weed.
Does Maiden Grass need to be cut back?
Yes, the Maiden Grass does need to be cut back. This is because it is a vigorous grower and can quickly outpace other plants in the garden. Cutting it back will also help to encourage new growth and keep the plant healthy. The best time to do this in late winter or early spring, before new growth appears.