Fountain grass, Pennisetum thunbergii 'Red Buttons'

Pennisetum thunbergii ‘Red Buttons’

Fountain grass

  • Botanical name: Pennisetum thunbergii 'Red Buttons'
  • Common name: Fountain grass
  • Family: Poaceae
  • Plant Type: Perennial, Deciduous
Flower colour:




Foliage colour:


Grown for their linear leaves and feathery, spikes, Pennisetum are used in mixed borders, and once cut used commonly in both fresh and dried flower arrangements. They grow best in moist, yet well-drained, fertile soil in full sun. Cut back top dead growth by early spring, and protect from frost with a dry mulch in winter.


From midsummer, Pennisetum thunbergii ‘Red Buttons’ produces a mass of feathery red-purple flowers that are suspended on delicate stems. Pennisetum thunbergii ‘Red Buttons’ is perfect for growing in a large, mixed border and can also be grown in pots and containers.


For best results, grow Pennisetum thunbergii ‘Red Buttons’ in full sun and moist, well-drained soil. This pennisetum is usually grown as an annual as it can only take light frosts, though in very mild locations it may survive as a perennial, especially if grown in well-drained soil.

How to grow Pennisetum 'Red Buttons'

  • Plant size

    100cm height

    100cm spread

  • Aspect

    South facing, west facing

  • Position in border

    Front, middle

  • Sun exposure: Full sun
  • Hardiness: Frost hardy
  • Soil type: Acidic / chalky / alkaline / clay / heavy / moist / well drained / light / sandy

Pennisetum 'Red Buttons' and wildlife

Pennisetum 'Red Buttons' has no particular known value to wildlife in the UK.

Is Pennisetum 'Red Buttons' poisonous?

Pennisetum 'Red Buttons' has no toxic effects reported.

No reported toxicity to:

No reported toxicity to Birds

No reported toxicity to Cats

No reported toxicity to Dogs

No reported toxicity to Horses

No reported toxicity to Livestock

No reported toxicity to People

Plants that go well with Pennisetum 'Red Buttons'


Amaranthus caudatus

Love lies bleeding
Verbena bonariensis

Verbena bonariensis

Argentinian vervain