Plant types and subtypes: Grasses, Wetland Grasses
Light Requirements: sun
Water Use: high
Soil Moisture: wet
Soil Description: acid, rich, average, loam, clay, sand
Bloom Time: April, May, June
Bloom Color: yellow
Leaf Color: green
Hardiness Zone: 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10
Additional Tags: attracts birds, colonizing, fall interest, mat-forming, naturalizing, ornamental foliage, salt tolerant, salt-spray tolerant, swamp plant, wetland plant
Pricing & Availability
Spartina patensAlso known as:
salt meadow hay,
Spartina patens is a slender, salt water marsh grass. Though individual plants grow to a height of 3', they are usually blown over due to their weak structure. In a naturalized setting, this will give the appearance of a sea of grass with crests and troughs, or a field of grassy cowlicks.
This species of cordgrass requires a salt water or brackish environment to thrive. There are some inland, fresh water populations but these are very rare. Spartina patens is an essential grass for healthy, eastern tidal wetlands. Along with filtering polluted runoff and protecting shorelines against erosion, it is a source of fodder for grazing animals, food and shelter for birds, and a safe haven for young fish, shellfish and crustaceans. Zones 4-10
Salt meadow hay spreads by mat-forming rhizomes that can easily be divided. Easily propagated from seed.
Spartina patens is an important species to the ecology of the coastal areas of the eastern US, it is however considered an invasive species in other areas of the world where it has been introduced. This includes the States of California, Washington, and Oregon where it is classified as a noxious, invasive weed and has become a threat to local ecosystems. This species should not be planted outside its native range. For additional weed information, please consult the USDA website.
Native Range & Classification
Recorded County Distribution: USDA data
AL, CT, DE, FL, GA, LA, MA, MD, ME, MI, MS, NC, NH, NJ, NY, PA, RI, SC, TX, VA
|Species||Spartina patens||salt meadow hay|