Little bluestem

FAMILY: Poaceae | GENUS: SCHIZACHYRIUM scoparium

TYPE
  • Ornamental Grasses
  • Perennials
SUN EXPOSURE
  • Full Sun
WATER
  • Drought Tolerant
  • Moderate Water
PLANTING ZONES
  • US (Upper South) / Zone 6
  • MS (Middle South) / Zone 7
  • LS (Lower South) / Zone 8
  • CS (Coastal South) / Zone 9

Plant Details

Native to much of North America; an important grass in the native tall-grass prairie. Formerly known as Andropogon scoparius. Clump-forming grass 24 feet tall, 12 feet wide, with narrow leaves that may be erect or arching. Late-summer flowers are inconspicuous but age to an attractive silvery shade. Leaf color varies from bright green to distinctly bluish in summer, from light brown to dark red in fall and winter. Types that are bluer in summer take on the deeper cold-weather colors: Blue-green leaves of 'Blaze' turn a strong red in fall, while 'The Blues' and 'Prairie Blues' have striking light blue leaves that turn burgundy-red.

All are heat-loving, pest-free plants that look especially nice in meadow plantings. Plant in almost any well-drained soil, though rich, fertile soils are not to its liking.

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