Schizachyrium scoparium - Andropogan scoparium Little Bluestem 
ski-za-KRY-ee-um  sko-PAIR-ee-um  /  an-dro-PO-gon
warm season grass seed 

Native Wild Flower Seeds and Potted Plants

Easyliving Native Perennial Wildflowers
for Home Landscaping and Prairie Restoration
 john@easywildflowers.com 

  Habitat Bloom Period Flower Color Height Inches Moisture Plant Spacing Lifespan
Sun to Light Shade July and August Reddish-
Brown
30 to 42 Dry to Average 18 to 24 inches Perennial
Grass
Schizachyrium scoparium or Andropogan scoparium (Little Bluestem warm season grass)   October

Schizachyrium scoparium or Andropogan scoparium (Little Bluestem warm season grass)

December

Schizachyrium scoparium or Andropogan scoparium (Little Bluestem warm season grass)

  Schizachyrium scorparium seed, little bluestem warm season grass seed    

Schizachyrium scoparium, Little Bluestem photo by cj  

 

For our other native wildflowers visit Wildflower Seed and Potted Plant Price List

 to order copy and mail the order form
or 
email questions, comments, and orders to john@easywildflowers.com 

Schizachyrium scoparium Little Bluestem Grass potted plants are available $5.00 each plus Boxing/Shipping

email with your zip code and number of plants
for the correct shipping costs on native grasses and wildflower potted plants.

Schizachyrium scoparium seed
Little Bluestem Grass seed

approximate
number of seeds

approximate coverage
in square feet

1 packet -  $2.50 + shipping

  150

 sq ft

1 ounce -  $3.50

 11,000

270 sq ft

1 pound - $28.50

 176,000

4,350 sq ft

Grass seeds are very bulky
 please email for shipping charges on ounce and pound quantities of grass seed.

Schizachyrium = Split chaff
Scoparium = like a broom
Andropogon = Man (male, husband, bearded)

Schizachyrium scoparium or Andropogan scoparium (Little Bluestem warm season grass) is perfect for both a formal flower garden or prairie meadow and is a host plant to Skipper butterflies.  This is one of the best known prairie grasses growing throughout the tall grass prairie region.  Little Bluestem is a drought tolerant clump forming grass widely used in flower beds where it becomes reddish-brown in autumn providing shape, texture, and color into the winter months. 

Little bluestem is a very attractive clump forming native grass useful for landscaping, wildlife habitat and erosion control.  Little bluestem seed is eaten by songbirds and upland gamebirds and the plant provides cover for ground birds and small mammals.  Little Bluestem is useful in ornamental plantings with its blue-green leaves during the growing season and attractive rusty color with white fluffy seedheads in the fall.  Because of its growth habit and adaptability to a wide range of soil conditions Little Bluestem is useful for erosion control and is especially well suited for use on thin upland range sites.  It will grow on a wide variety of soils but is very well adapted to well-drained, medium to dry, infertile soils. Little bluestem has excellent drought tolerance, fair shade tolerance, and fair to poor flood tolerance.  Little bluestem is readily grazed by livestock, deer, and elk and is suitable for hay.

Native Little Bluestem grass occurs naturally in upland prairies, limestone glades, and open woods, and is Widespread in the United States and adjacent parts of eastern Canada. Gramineae (Grass Family)

The map below shows areas where Schizachyrium scoparium Little bluestem warm season grass grows wild.

Schizachyrium scoparium
Little Blue Stem Grass

Colorado
Connecticut
Delaware
Florida
Georgia
Hawaii
Idaho
Illinois
Indiana
Iowa
Kansas
Kentucky
Louisiana
Maine
Maryland

Massachusetts
Michigan
Minnesota
Mississippi
Missouri
Montana
Nebraska
New Hampshire
New Jersey
New Mexico
New York
North Carolina
North Dakota
Ohio

Oklahoma
Pennsylvania
Rhode Island
South Carolina
South Dakota
Tennessee
Texas
Utah
Vermont
Virginia
Washington
West Virginia
Wisconsin
Wyoming

State Distributional Map for Schizachyrium scoparium, little bluestem grass

Alabama
Arizona
Arkansas
California

Use the chart below for shipping charges on native wildflower seeds

to order copy and mail the order form
OR
 email questions, comments and orders to john@easywildflowers.com 

please email for shipping charges on ounce or pound quantities of grass seed.

Please contact us by email with your zip code and number of plants for shipping charges and availability on  potted plants

We accept payment by check, money order, and through Paypal

email for the correct shipping amount on orders containing ounce and pound quantities of grass seed

The shipping amounts below are for flower seeds and small packets of grass seed
 

please email for shipping charges on ounce or pound quantities of grass seed.

subtotal for flower seeds 

shipping charge for seeds

seed orders up to  $20.00    =  

 $4.00 shipping

$20.01 - $50.00    =  

 $6.00 shipping

$50.01-$100.00    =  

 $7.50 shipping

over $100.00    =    7.5 % of subtotal

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  Wildflower Seed and Potted Plant Price list

Order Form    Flower Pictures

Easyliving Wildflowers
PO Box  522
Willow Springs,  MO.  65793
USA
Phone 417-469-2611 

We accept payment by check or money order and through PayPal

e-mail questions, comments, and orders to  john@easywildflowers.com

Plant distribution map complements of USDA, NRCS. 2001. The PLANTS Database, Version 3.1
  (http://plants.usda.gov). National Plant Data Center, Baton Rouge, LA 70874-4490 USA.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Uses Pasture/range/hayland: Little bluestem is a fair forage species and is readily grazed by livestock, deer, and elk. It is also suitable for hay. Erosion control: Because of its growth habit and adaptability to a wide range of soil conditions, little bluestem is useful as a component of revegetation mixes. It is especially well-suited for use on thin upland range sites. Wildlife: Little bluestem seed is eaten by songbirds and upland gamebirds. The plant provides cover for ground birds and small mammals. Landscaping: With its blue-green leaves during the growing season and attractive rusty color with white fluffy seedheads in the fall, little bluestem is useful in ornamental plantings.

Status Please consult the PLANTS Web site and your State Department of Natural Resources for this plant’s current status (e.g. threatened or endangered species, state noxious status, and wetland indicator values).

Description Little bluestem is a medium height grass with coarse stems and basal leaves. As a warm season grass it begins growth in late spring and continues through the hot summer period until the first killing frost. It is easily mistaken for common broomsedge. Little bluestem has very flat bluish basal shoots. Plants are green, but often purplish at base of stem and the entire plant has a reddish cast after frost. Leaves are smooth, but frequently are covered with hair at the base next to the sheath. Leaves tend to fold with maturity. Seed head clusters about three inches long. The cluster stems are hairy. Plant height varies from 18 inches on droughty sites to 3 feet on deep, fertile soils. There are 255,000 seeds per pound. Broomsedge (Andropogon virginicus) has a straight awn and has two or more stalked seed clusters per branch. Little bluestem has a twisted, bent awn and a single cluster of seeds per branch. Seacoast bluestem (Schizachyrium scoparium var. littorale) occurs only in the coastal plain region. It is very similar to little bluestem but can be distinguished by the bent stems at the base, whereas little bluestem stems are erect.

Adaptation and Distribution Little bluestem is one of the most widely distributed native grasses in North America. It will grow on a wide variety of soils but is very well adapted to well-drained, medium to dry, infertile soils. The plant has excellent drought and fair shade tolerance, and fair to poor flood tolerance. It grows preferentially on sites with pH 7.0 and slightly higher. Little bluestem is distributed throughout the United States. For a current distribution map, please consult the Plant Profile page for this species on the PLANTS Website.

Establishment Little bluestem should be seeded as early in the spring as possible. Where no-till is used due to slope, stoniness, or other reasons, sod control should be performed in the fall to permit early spring planting. The seeding rate for establishing a pure stand with broadcast or no-till methods should be 7 to 12 pounds PLS per acre. When drills are used to plant, debearded seed must be utilized unless the drill has a chaffy seed box. When the seed is broadcast, a packer should be utilized to firm the seedbed and incorporate the seed 1/4 to 1/2 inch (3/4 inch on very droughty sites). No nitrogen fertilizer should be applied during the establishment year unless no weed competition is expected. If pH is below 5.5, lime is recommended during site preparation or the fall prior to no-till plantings. For critical area seeding, the preferred method of planting is drilling, but if this is not possible, an acceptable alternative method is broadcasting the seed (typically in a mix with other warm season grasses) and ‘tracking’ it in with a bulldozer. The dozer moves up and down slope, off-setting each pass until the entire area is covered with tracks. Seedings should be made as early as possible in the spring on sands and gravels, without mulching. Moderate levels of N, P, and K are sufficient for establishment, and soil pH should be 5.5 to 6.0. Cultipacker-type planters are not suitable for this species.

Management Control of competition is necessary for successful stand establishment. High mowing (above the bluestem seedlings) is a common method of weed control. Once established, poor stands can be rehabilitated by using proper management practices, such as controlled grazing, application of recommended rates of herbicides and fertilizer, and prescribed spring burning, where permitted. Do not graze a forage planting during the year of establishment. During subsequent growing seasons, harvesting by controlled grazing or haying is possible on good stands. Do not remove more than 50% of the current year’s growth from plants. No cropping should occur below 8 inches or within 1 month of anticipated frosts. Grazing of competing cool season grasses after frost in the fall and before the little bluestem is 1 inch tall in the spring is desirable.

Pests and Potential Problems There are no serious pests of little bluestem.

Cultivars, Improved, and Selected Materials (and area of origin) ‘Aldous’ (Kansas), ‘Camper’ (Nebraska, Kansas), ‘Cimmaron’ (Kansas, Oklahoma), ‘Pastura’ (New Mexico) and ‘Blaze’ (Nebraska, Kansas) are cultivars that have been developed. There are also local ecotypes of little bluestem available from seed companies.