Bring the Outdoors Home

Little Bluestem | Plant Profile

Little Blustem (Schizachyrium scoparium) is an ornamental grass that is changes color throughout the year. It grows with clumps with rigid blades that stick straight into the air. These grasses are a blueish green in the summer, but can turn orange, red, and rust color in the cooler months. The progression of colors brings interest from spring to winter.

With no need for pollination, Little Bluestem is self seeding and may become invasive and overpower lawn grass. It needs dry to medium moisture soils that can be very infertile. This makes it an excellent option for erosion prevention and groundcover in hard-to-grow areas.


Little Bluestem Characteristics

Little Bluestem is an ornamental grass but can also be considered a groundcover if left to spread unchecked. It grows in clumps and has fluffy seed pods that can be cut and displayed in indoor vases and dried flower arrangements. The progression of colors throughout most of the year make this an attractive option for those who like a garden to bring interest nearly year-round.

There are few serious diseases or pests the plague Little Bluestem, but this plant can quickly become invasive due to it's ability to self seed. Once established, regular watering should not be required unless in times of prolonged drought. These plants are tolerant of many types of soils including clay, dry, and basically infertile ground. Little Bluestem should be planted in full sun and should be cut to the ground in late winter to make way for new growth.

Little Bluestem make an excellent meadow grass that requires little maintenance if left to spread. It can also make a lovely border with it's ever-changing colors. They are often planted in outdoor pots and containers, but should be regularly divided to prevent overcrowding.

USDA Climate Zone
Zones  3 - 9
2 - 4'
1.5 - 2.00'
Bloom Time
August - February
Dry - Medium
Full Sun
Deer Resistant?