The confusion with many names that Miscanthus has in the German language continues partly in botanical names. The energy crop Miscanthus x giganteus is genetically similar to Miscanthus sinensis that generally comprises many ornamental Miscanthus varieties. For example, Miscanthus sinensis “Strictus”, “Malepartus”, “Small Silver Spider”, or “Far East”;
Although the term of “elephant grass” for Miscanthus sinensis is especially widespread in Austria and southern Germany, it is botanically incorrect. Actually, “elephant grass” is the correct name for Pennisetum purpureum that is native to Africa.
To make the confusion even greater, here are some other names for Miscanthus sinensis, which are all in circulation and can only partly be considered as correct: Chinese reed, Chinese grass, giant Chinese grass, giant Chinese reed, and even more, perhaps. “Jumbo grass” is another creation of our house, especially for the use of Miscanthus in garden design.