Pet Grass

(Elymus hispidus)
  • Type Annual
  • Planting time Spring, fall
  • Features Vibrant green blades that look great and attract pets
  • Light Full sun
  • Soil Fertile, moist but well drained
  • Plant spacing 9 inches
  • Plant size 6 to 12 inches tall
  • Garden use Grown for pets to chew

This grass is attractive to dogs and cats. They need a little grass in their diets, especially if they do not spend a lot of time outdoors, where they will often chew on whatever grass is available. This easy-to-grow grass is also called intermediate wheatgrass, but it is not the wheat from which bread flour is made. This is originally an Asian pasture grass that was introduced to the US many years ago for pasture and fodder. You can grow it in pots for your indoor pets, or plant it in beds outdoors for animals that spend time outside.

Some Bonnie Plants varieties may not be available in your local area, due to different variables in certain regions. Also, if any variety is a limited, regional variety it will be noted on the pertinent variety page.

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At a glance

Light requirements: Full sun.

Planting: Space 9 inches apart.

Soil requirements: Plants thrive in rich, moist but well-drained soil. Work organic matter into planting beds before planting to add fertility and improve moisture retention. In containers, use a quality commercial soilless mix.

Water requirements: Keep soil consistently moist. Apply mulch to planting beds to retain soil moisture and keep leaves clean.

Frost-fighting plan: Pet grass can withstand a few hard frosts (temperatures below 28º F). Use a frost blanket to protect newly planted seedlings from late spring frosts.

Common issues: Avoid overwatering, as soggy soil can lead to root rot.

Growing tips: Choose a container that’s the right height for your pet to reach easily for nibbling. Consider growing two pots, one for outdoors and the other for indoors; switch them when the inside pot begins to look weary.

Harvesting: Allow pets to nibble leaves freely. If the plant starts to show signs of failing, pull it and plant another.

For more information, visit the Pet Grass page in our How to Grow section.