A Simple Way to Trim a Large Ornamental Grass

Trimming a large grass may seem hectic the first time around, but with a few tools around the house and a bit of time, the process will be as simple as 1, 2, 3.

What you need:

- Two trash cans (or heavy-duty outdoor bags)
- Gloves - I recommend leather but other outdoor gloves will do.
- A rake
- Hedge clippers
- One large grass

How you cut your grass depends on the season and what phase the grass is in.

There are several stages - which are different depending on the season: winter, spring, summer, fall.

The best time to cut the grass is in fall, when the leaves have lost most of their green color.

If you're trimming the grass at the beginning of spring season (when you start to see green growth), be careful not to pull the stalks. You may find some old decaying stalks/grass as you get closer to the center of the plants. If you pull this out during this stage, you may actually damage the grass (give it a bald spot).

I cut the grass in the picture below at the beginning of spring, so I am treating it with extra care.

Ornamental Grass that Needs to Be CutCredit: Tim John Jr

The first step is to cut the grass to about half the stalk length. It is easier to cut the lowest stalks first and then move to the top. The grass will still have a messy appearance at this point.

Ornamental Grass Cut Half LengthCredit: Tim John Jr

Rake the grass and stalk cuttings a short distance away from the grass. By doing this, you will be able to see all the low-growing stalks that you need to cut.

Cut the grass one more step further down to give it a smooth appearance. 

Ornamental Grass SmoothCredit: Tim John Jr

For further refinement, you will want to trim the edges. Use the hedge clipper to cut vertically around the edge of the plant.

Cut Ornamental Grass EdgeCredit: Tim John Jr

This is what the grass looks like all cleaned up.

Ornamental Grass Cut SmoothCredit: Tim John Jr

When you load the  grass into trash cans, push the stalks and leaves below the rim of the can. This will prevent the leaves from blowing out of the trash and on your lawn (left can).


Trash Cans with Ornamental GrassCredit: Tim John Jr


I hope this short guide helps you in your outdoor ornamental grass cutting endeavor!