Editor’s Note: Each month, the Greenhouse Grower varieties team chooses one noteworthy variety we think is worth bringing to your attention. Then we share growers’ and breeders’ perspectives on the best ways to produce it successfully at your operation.
This month we feature ‘Prince Tut’ from Proven Winners’ Graceful Grasses collection, a compact form of Egyptian Papyrus (Cyperus papyrus) that is half the size of ‘King Tut.’ ‘Prince Tut’ received an Honorable Mention from Greenhouse Grower’s 2016 Medal of Excellence in Breeding award program. This sturdy grass is versatile, working well in all container sizes with its columnar habit and dense canopy and filling out well in the landscape.
Growing Tips From Mike Goyette of Pleasant View Gardens
Greenhouse Grower magazine named Mike Goyette as a finalist for its 2016 Head Grower of the Year program and winner of its Excellence in Quality award. Goyette says ‘Prince Tut’ is an iconic plant with a tropical feel that stood out in trials. It is a compact, sturdier version of ‘King Tut’ Cyperus grass that handles light frost in the fall and is super easy to produce from rooted liners. It makes a good shade plant, too. Goyette says he has grown it under heavy shade, and it has performed well.
Goyette’s Recommendations For ‘Prince Tut’ Grass:
Fertilizer: Use any full package general use liquid fertilizer at 150 ppm nitrogen constant to match your operation’s water quality. ‘Prince Tut’ tolerates a wide pH range of 6 to 6.5 and a soil EC of 0.6 to 0.9 (2:1 method).
Propagation: Not allowed. Available as rooted liners via Proven Winners only.
Plant Growth Regulators: These are generally not needed, but to control height or to “miniaturize” for smaller pots use a paclobutrazol drench at 1 ppm.
Pinching: Not needed
Lighting: Artificial lighting is not needed. The plants do well with natural light from partial shade to full sun.
Growing Media: ‘Prince Tut’ will grow in most soils and tolerate poor soil conditions (heavy, wet, pond edges, etc.). Any standard growing medium will work fine.
Irrigation: Keep plants moist to wet. Water to 4 or 5 on the watering scale and allow to dry down to a 3. Do not allow the plants to dry down past a 2.
Temperatures: For growing on, temperatures should be mid 60s and warmer. Plants can go down to the mid 50s for finishing.
Planting/Scheduling: 4- to 5-inch quart pots (4 to 6 weeks), 6-inch and gallon pots (6 to 8 weeks)
Pests/Diseases: Due to the water requirements of ‘Prince Tut,’ scout for fungus gnats. There were no disease issues with this plant.
Production Quick Facts From Proven Winners
pH: 6 to 6.5
EC (2:1 Extraction Method): 0.6 to 0.9
Fertilizer: Medium (150 to 200 ppm)
Irrigation: Moist to Wet
Growing on temperature: 65°F to 72°F
Holding temperature: 50°F to 60°F
Planting/Timing: Spring to summer sales, standard PPP
Pinching/PGRs: No pinching or plant growth regulators needed.
Pests/Diseases: Use general pest and disease practices. May need to repeat fungicide drench if soil-borne disease occurs.
Spring outdoor finish: Do not move outside until after last frost.
Grower tip: Can be grown as a water plant or bog plant.