Big Bluestem

Andropogon gerardii, native
  • Warm season perennial
  • Plants send out tough, strong rhizomes so the stand becomes sod-forming
  • Grows very tall in good soil and moisture conditions
  • Base of plant turns purplish-blue as it matures
  • Not tolerant to shade
  • Tolerant to wildfire
  • High protein forage for livestock
  • Drought tolerant
  • Commonly used for erosion control
  • Can be slow to establish
  • Provides shelter for nesting birds
  • Dominant species in tallgrass prairies
  • Common in open woods, prairies, meadows, along riverbanks and roadsides
  • Abundant in lowland prairies, overflow sites and sandy areas

Characteristics Table
Growth Habit Bunchgrass
Flood Tolerance Excellent
Drought Tolerance Good
Salt Tolerance Fair
Soil PH Neutral to Basic
Soil Type Moderately Coarse to Moderately Fine
Approx. Seeds/lb 130,000
Canopy Mature Height 1-3m

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