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Pennisetum alopecuroides

Family: Poaceae


Native to: East Asia


Types: grass, perennial

Forms: arching, erect, tufted

Max height: 5 feet

Max width: 5 feet




dark, green


Attracts wildlife: adult butterfly, bird

Bird species attracted to plant: quail, thrashers

Plant part consumed by birds: seeds

Exposure: sun

Landscape uses: container, dried flower, ground cover

Propagates by: seed

flowers in fall

flowers in summer

Soil type: wide range

USDA Zones: zone 6 to -10 f, zone 7 to 0 f, zone 8 to +10 f, zone 9 to +20 f

Temp. range: -10 to +30 °F

Water: moderate, regular

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Container plants that attract adult butterflies - perennial

This plant is one of 186 perennials suitable to grow in a container that will attract adult butterflies. 38 of these plants attract birds and 67 attract specific butterfly species. They can be found in every height range – from tiny to large – from less than a foot high to over 10 feet tall. 19 of these plants are drought tolerant, more than 80 are available for dry or moderate watering conditions. 29 are deciduous, while 71 are evergreen. Some can grow in Zone 2, while the others grow in Zones 3-11. 178 perennial plants that attract butterflies and can be grown in containers in Zone 9. 77 can be used as cut flowers. They come in any one of the available flower colors.

We have found that, when given a choice, butterflies and bees frequent named species more often than cultivars. You may want to keep this in mind when you select plants for your garden if your goal is to attract and support these insects.

You are free to use any of the above filters to reduce the plant list further.