Pennisetum glaucum. Start the precious seeds of this jaw-dropping annual indoors six to eight weeks before your last frost date, and space the seedlings at least 60cm (24") apart. This magnificent hybrid millet is the very meaning of ornamental, with dark, mahogany/purple leaves followed by stunning, cattail-like panicles (seed heads) that can reach 1.2m (5') tall. Grow single plants in large patio containers for a summer long spectacle or use the seed heads in bouquets or as dried flowers. It would also look amazing as a kind of hedge or in other mass plantings. We dried the panicles from our summer seed trial — they actually smell like brown sugar!
Cloud Grass, a species of bentgrass, forms a diaphanous hazy mist in late summer when its delicate, tiny flowers spread out in all directions. It is useful to know some tips on how to grow cloud grass.
Exposure: Full sun to partial shade
Start seeds indoors 4-6 weeks before planting out. Or direct sow in early spring, when soil is cool and a light frost is still possible. It can also be planted in late autumn.
Just cover the small seeds. At a temperature of 10-12°C (50-55°F) seeds should germinate in 21 to 25 days.
Transplant after last frost into average, well drained soil. Space plants 15-20cm (6-8″) apart. Feed regularly and don’t let the soil become completely dry. Keep an eye on the flowering stage and cut the stems for drying before the seeds set in order to prevent self-sowing. The flower stems are spectacular when dried and will last for months. Cut them and hang them upside-down in a dark, airy place until fully dried.