Schizachyrium scoparium 'The Blues' - Little Bluestem
Schizachyrium scoparium 'The Blues'
This is an excellent native grass for the garden. It is an upright, clump-forming grass with slender, blue-green leaves. The foliage turns a striking red-orange in the fall, excellent in massed plantings or mixed with other native grasses and wildflowers. Fluffy silver seed heads bloom in late summer or early fall and are ornamental through winter.
- Fine-textured blue-green foliage
- Provides nest sites, cover, and food for birds
- Outstanding fall color and great winter interest
- Birds feed on the seeds in late fall and winter
- Drought tolerant once established in landscape
Prairies, fields, open woodlands, and roadsides; New Brunswick to Alberta south to Arizona and Florida.
Map Credit: The Biota of North America
Map Key: Green (native), Teal (native, adventive), Blue (present), Yellow (present & rare), Red (extinct)
Little bluestem's root system is deep and fibrous. Individual roots are relatively fine but most roots grow almost vertically downward to depths comparable to shade trees. This is one of the reasons why it is so drought tolerant.
Easy to grow in full sun. Grow in dry to average soil. Tolerates heat and humidity easily. Watering or fertilization is actually detrimental; best left to its own devices! Leave the foliage in place for winter interest and to provide homes for over-wintering critters. Cut back to the ground in late winter before new growth begins.