Pampas Grass in Pots: A Gardener’s Guide to Portable Beauty

Potted Pampas Grass
Potted Pampas Grass

Pampas Grass, with its towering plumes and dramatic presence, is a garden favorite. But what if you don’t have a spacious yard or want more control over its growth? That’s where the magic of Pampas Grass in pots comes in. In this guide, we’ll explore the art of growing Pampas Grass in containers, offering you a chance to enjoy its beauty and elegance, even in limited spaces.

Pampas Grass: A Brief Overview

What is Pampas Grass?

Let’s start with the basics. Pampas Grass, scientifically known as Cortaderia selloana, is a showstopper in the plant world. Native to South America, it boasts tall, feathery plumes that capture attention wherever they sway.

Scientific NameCortaderia selloana
Plant TypePerennial Grass
Mature HeightVariable, depending on the pot’s size and the variety of Pampas Grass; typically 6 to 13 feet or shorter in containers
Growth HabitClumping, with long, slender leaves and feathery plumes
Plume ColorCreamy white, silvery, or pinkish
Flowering SeasonLate summer to early fall
Sun ExposureFull sun
Container SizeLarger containers are necessary to accommodate mature plants
Soil RequirementsWell-draining potting mix with good aeration
Watering NeedsKeep the soil evenly moist but not waterlogged; water less in winter
Pruning NeedsRegular pruning of dead plumes and outer leaves for a tidy appearance
Cold ToleranceGenerally hardy in pots but may need winter protection in very cold climates
MobilityPotted Pampas Grass offers portability and flexibility in garden design
Space ManagementIdeal for small gardens, balconies, and spaces with limited ground area

Pampas Grass in Landscaping

In gardens and landscapes, Pampas Grass is the star of the show. It’s favored for several reasons:

  • Dramatic Visual Impact: The plumes create a striking focal point.
  • Low Maintenance: Once established, it’s relatively easy to care for.
  • Privacy Screen: It serves as a natural screen or windbreak.

How to Grow Pampas Grass in Pots

Benefits of Container Gardening

Why would anyone want to grow Pampas Grass in pots? There are several compelling reasons:

  • Space Management: Potted Pampas Grass allows you to control its size, perfect for small gardens or balconies.
  • Flexibility: You can move the pots around to change the landscape or sun exposure.
  • Aesthetic Appeal: The contrast of the grass and the container can be visually stunning.

Selecting the Right Container

Choosing the right container is crucial. Here’s what to consider:

  • Pot Size: Select a pot that accommodates the mature size of Pampas Grass. Generally, bigger is better.
  • Material: Go for a container made of durable materials like ceramic, concrete, or plastic.
  • Drainage: Ensure the pot has adequate drainage holes to prevent waterlogged roots.

Planting and Potting Mix

Planting Pampas Grass in pots requires the correct approach:

  • Planting Depth: Plant the grass at the same depth as it was in the original container.
  • Potting Mix: Use a well-draining potting mix with good aeration.

MORE: How to Grow Pampas Grass

Care and Maintenance

Keeping it Happy

Potted Pampas Grass demands attention and care, too:

  • Watering: Keep the soil evenly moist but not waterlogged.
  • Sunlight: Provide full sun for at least six hours a day.
  • Temperature: Protect it from harsh winter conditions.

Pruning and Pest Management

  • Pruning: Trim dead plumes and outer leaves for a tidy appearance.
  • Pest Management: Watch out for pests like aphids or mealybugs.

Potential Challenges

Growing Pampas Grass in pots can come with its share of challenges:

  • Size Control: Vigilant pruning or repotting may be necessary to manage its size.
  • Overwintering: Protect the plant from harsh winter weather.

Design and Aesthetic Tips

Potted Pampas Grass can be a design marvel:

  • Container Variety: Experiment with container styles, from rustic to modern.
  • Companion Plants: Pair it with colorful annuals or low-growing perennials.

How to Plant Pampas Grass in Pots

Planting pampas grass in pots can be a fantastic way to enjoy its striking beauty while controlling its growth. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to plant pampas grass in pots:

Materials You’ll Need:

  1. A large, sturdy pot with drainage holes.
  2. Well-draining potting mix suitable for ornamental grasses.
  3. Pampas grass plant or seeds.
  4. Gravel or small stones (optional, for added drainage).
  5. Gloves (to protect your hands from the sharp leaves).

Step-by-Step Guide: How to Plant Pampas Grass in Pots

  1. Select the Right Pot: Choose a pot that is at least 18 to 24 inches (45-60 cm) in diameter and has drainage holes at the bottom. Pampas grass can grow quite large, so a larger pot provides more room for its roots.
  2. Prepare the Pot: If your pot doesn’t have sufficient drainage holes, consider adding a layer of gravel or small stones at the bottom to improve drainage. Fill the pot about one-third full with well-draining potting mix.
  3. Plant the Pampas Grass: If you’re starting with a pampas grass plant, remove it carefully from its original container and place it in the center of the pot. If you’re planting from seeds, sow the seeds directly in the pot, following the recommended depth on the seed packet.
  4. Fill with Soil: Fill the pot with more potting mix, ensuring that the crown of the pampas grass (where the roots meet the shoots) is level with the soil surface. Gently pat down the soil to remove air pockets.
  5. Water Thoroughly: Give the newly planted pampas grass a thorough watering to settle the soil. Water until you see water draining out of the bottom of the pot.
  6. Choose the Right Location: Place the pot in a location that receives at least 6 to 8 hours of direct sunlight each day. Pampas grass thrives in full sun.
  7. Pruning: In late winter or early spring, prune the pampas grass to remove dead or damaged growth and encourage new shoots. Be cautious while handling, as the leaves can be sharp.

By following these steps and providing the necessary care, you can successfully plant and grow pampas grass in pots, adding a striking and ornamental element to your outdoor space.

Seasonal Considerations

Adapting to the Seasons

Potted Pampas Grass requires different care in various seasons:

SeasonCare and Maintenance for Potted Pampas Grass
SpringPrune old growth for a tidy appearance.
Prepare the plant for the upcoming growing season.
SummerWater regularly to keep the soil evenly moist.
Apply balanced fertilizer as needed.
FallReduce watering as winter approaches to avoid waterlogged roots.
WinterProtect the plant from frost and extreme cold.
Consider bringing the pot indoors if the winter is severe.

Adapting your care routine based on the season will help your Pampas Grass thrive in its potted environment.

Benefits and Drawbacks

Weighing the Pros and Cons

Here’s a summary of the advantages and disadvantages:

Portability: Easy to move around for a change in landscape design.Vigilant Maintenance: Requires regular pruning and care.
Size Control: Easier to manage the size of the grass in a pot.Potential Size Challenges: May outgrow the container over time.
Versatility: Suitable for small spaces, balconies, and various settings.Overwintering Challenges: Requires protection from harsh winter weather.
Aesthetic Appeal: The contrast of the grass and container can be visually stunning.

Weighing these pros and cons will help you make an informed decision about growing Pampas Grass in pots based on your gardening goals and available resources.

Success Stories and Inspirations

Real-Life Gardens

Get inspired by the success stories of gardeners who’ve mastered Pampas Grass in pots:

  • Urban Balconies: Tiny spaces can still host the grandeur of Pampas Grass.
  • Elegant Entryways: Containers near doorways make a stunning first impression.
  • Portable Beauty: Move pots around to refresh your garden’s look.

Pampas grass in pots in winter

Growing pampas grass in pots during the winter months can be a bit challenging, as these plants are typically suited for outdoor environments. However, it’s possible to overwinter pampas grass in containers if you take the following precautions:

  1. Indoor Storage: As winter approaches and temperatures drop, consider bringing the potted pampas grass indoors. Place it in a cool, well-ventilated room, like a garage or unheated basement, where the temperature stays above freezing but remains on the cooler side.
  2. Reduced Watering: During the winter, pampas grass goes into dormancy, and its water requirements decrease significantly. Water sparingly, allowing the soil to dry out between waterings to prevent root rot.
  3. Minimal Light: Since pampas grass is dormant in winter, it doesn’t require much light. A space with limited natural light is sufficient. Artificial grow lights can be used if necessary.
  4. Pruning: In late winter or early spring, prune the pampas grass to remove any dead or damaged growth. This will prepare it for new growth when it reawakens in the spring.
  5. Protection: If your region experiences harsh winter conditions, consider wrapping the pot with insulation or burlap to provide some protection against freezing temperatures and drying winds.

It’s important to note that overwintering pampas grass indoors may not be ideal for its long-term health, as these plants naturally require a period of dormancy. Therefore, it’s advisable to transplant the pampas grass back outdoors in the spring when the weather warms up and it can resume its normal growth cycle.

MORE: Is Potted Pampas Grass Possible

Growing Tall Grasses in Pots

To successfully grow tall ornamental grasses in pots, choose suitable grass varieties, use large containers with good drainage, and employ a well-draining potting mix. Ensure the pot is placed in a sunny location, provide regular watering, and fertilize during the growing season. Prune the grasses in late winter or early spring, inspect for pests and diseases, and protect them from harsh winter conditions if necessary. Container-grown tall grasses can add height and texture to your garden or patio with proper care and maintenance.

Pampas grass in pots indoors

Growing pampas grass in pots indoors can be a unique and striking addition to your interior decor. Ensure the container is large, has good drainage, and use well-draining potting mix. Place the pot in a sunny location, water sparingly, and maintain indoor temperatures between 65°F to 75°F. Prune in late winter or early spring, watch for pests, and consider humidity needs. Be cautious of the plant’s sharp leaves, and provide winter protection if necessary. Indoor pampas grass can serve as a captivating focal point in your home décor.


Can you keep pampas grass in pots?

Yes, you can keep pampas grass in pots, but it requires proper care and maintenance. To do so, select a large pot with drainage holes, use well-draining potting mix, ensure the grass receives at least 6 to 8 hours of direct sunlight, water it consistently while avoiding waterlogging, and provide occasional fertilization. Prune the grass in late winter or early spring, inspect for pests and diseases, and protect it from harsh winter conditions if necessary. Container-grown pampas grass allows you to enjoy its striking beauty while controlling its growth, making it a suitable option for many outdoor spaces.

Can You Grow Pampas Grass In Pots

Yes, you can grow pampas grass in pots. To do so successfully, choose a large pot with drainage holes, use well-draining potting mix, provide plenty of sunlight, water it adequately but avoid waterlogging, and consider occasional fertilization. Pruning in late winter or early spring, inspecting for pests and diseases, and protecting it from harsh winter conditions are also important. Growing pampas grass in pots allows you to enjoy its striking beauty while controlling its growth, making it suitable for various outdoor spaces.


Pampas Grass in pots is your ticket to portable beauty and garden versatility. Whether you’re working with a small balcony or simply want more control over this majestic plant, container gardening has you covered. By choosing the right pot, providing diligent care, and understanding the seasonal needs of your Pampas Grass, you can enjoy its grace and elegance in any outdoor space. Happy potting!

Rachel Lean
Rachel Lean

Adventurer, loving nature and plants, particularly Pampas Grass. Happy to share with other people the knowledge that I accumulated on the journey of my life.