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Tridens flavus

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Plant types and subtypes: Grasses, Prairie Grasses, Ornamental Grasses

Light Requirements: sun, part-sun

Water Use: low

Soil Moisture: dry, moist

Soil Description: average, loam, clay, sand, gravel/rock

Height: 4'-6'

Bloom Time: July, August, September

Bloom Color: purple

Leaf Color: green

Hardiness Zone: 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10

Additional Tags: attracts butterflies, colonizing, drought tolerant, fall interest, naturalizing, ornamental foliage, salt tolerant

Tridens flavus (purpletop tridens)
  • Tridens flavus (purpletop tridens)
  • Tridens flavus (purpletop tridens)
  • Tridens flavus (purpletop tridens)

Pricing & Availability

Description

Tridens flavus

Also known as:

purpletop tridens

,

redtop tridens

,

tall redtop tridens

,

greasegrass

Scientific Synonyms:

Description

Tridens flavus is a tall, warm season bunchgrass. While the leaves might not grow longer than 2 1/2', the culms can easily grow to a height of 6' or more, and when planted in mass its purple spikelets will create a floating purplish haze.

Cultivation

Purpletop tridens is easy to grow. It prefers full sun, but is not particular about soil. It is adapted to moist to dry, well-drained soils that can be shallow, rocky, sandy, or sterile. It is also salt tolerant, which makes it a common sight along roadsides that are heavily treated during winter. The blooming period begins in mid-summer and lasts 1 to 2 weeks, with the ensuing spikelets persisting through late fall. Zones 5-10

Propagation

Easy to propagate from seed. These should be sown in spring, after last frost.

Additional Notes

This is a very attractive tall grass. It is also attractive to browsing mammals, however, its ability to self-seed makes it easy to establish permanent colonies.

Native Range & Classification

Recorded County Distribution: USDA data

Native Range:
AL, AR, CA, CT, DC, DE, FL, GA, IA, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MA, MD, MI, MN, MO, MS, NC, NE, NH, NJ, NM, NY, OH, OK, PA, RI, SC, TN, TX, VA, VT, WI, WV

Classification

Kingdom Plantae Plants
Subkingdom Tracheobionta Vascular plants
Superdivision Spermatophyta Seed plants
Division Magnoliophyta Flowering plants
Class Liliopsida Monocotyledons
Subclass Commelinidae
Order Cyperales
Family Poaceae Grass family
Genus Tridens tridens
Species Tridens flavus purpletop tridens