Plant types and subtypes: Grasses, Prairie Grasses, Ornamental Grasses
Light Requirements: sun, part-sun
Water Use: low
Soil Moisture: dry, moist
Soil Description: acid, neutral, alkaline, average, poor, clay, sand, gravel/rock
Bloom Time: June, July, August, September
Bloom Color: yellow, green
Leaf Color: blue-green, gray-green
Hardiness Zone: 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10
Additional Tags: attracts birds, clumping, colonizing, dried flowers, drought tolerant, fall interest, mounding, naturalizing, ornamental foliage, rock garden plant, winter interest
Pricing & Availability
Schizachyrium scopariumAlso known as:
Little bluestem has been getting a lot of attention from gardeners, and rightfully so as it provides year round visual interest. Plants emerge as the weather warms, and grow into tight clumps of erect, blue-green, fine textured grass, up to a height of 4'. As the weather cools, the grass turns to spectacular shades of orange, red and crimson, and the seed heads develop into showy white tufts. Both the grass, and seed heads, will persist well into winter, and will provide wonderful contrast in areas that receive snow.
Schizachyrium scoparium is very easy to grow, low maintenance, and highly adaptable. The only conditions it will not tolerate are shade and wet soil. It thrives in poor, dry soil in full sun. In a garden, It can be mixed with tall growing perennials as a ground covering filler and weed barrier. These taller perennials will over shadow the little bluestem, keep its height in check. Its neat form makes it a good specimen choice for a rock garden. It is also quite effective in groups or in masse plantings. Cut back old foliage in spring before new growth emerges. Though it will naturalize by seed, it does not do so aggressively, and therefore the spread is easy to control if so desired. A warm season perennial grass that is very cold hardy. Zones 3-10.
Easy to propagate by clump division. Can be propagate from seed, but germination rates are low. Seeds do not require treatment or stratification.
Little bluestem is a multi purpose species that is currently under utilized.
Native Range & Classification
Recorded County Distribution: USDA data
AL, AR, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DC, DE, FL, GA, IA, ID, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MO, MS, MT, NC, ND, NE, NH, NJ, NM, NY, OH, OK, PA, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VA, VT, WA, WI, WV, WY
|Species||Schizachyrium scoparium||little bluestem|