Alphabetical Plant Listing

Andropogon ternarius (Splitbeard Bluestem)

Splitbeard Bluestem, Silver Bluestem, Paintbrush Bluestem


Appealing in most seasons, Andropogon ternarius (Splitbeard Bluestem) is a warm season perennial grass forming an upright clump of green or reddish, often glaucous stems. Emerging silvery blue-green in spring, the foliage of ribbon-like leaves turns bronze to copper in the fall. In late summer and fall, silvery-white fluffy seed heads are borne along the upper portions of the stems. They are particularly striking when they catch the sunlight. The seeds are eaten by a variety of birds and small mammals, and the seed tufts are used by birds for nesting materials. Native to the central and southeastern United States, Split Beard Bluestem occurs in pine woodlands, old fields, pastures, prairies, on roadsides, and in other dry, open habitats. Perfect for providing height and color to the garden, Splitbeard Bluestem is drought tolerant, requires very little care, is virtually disease and pest free and provides months of interest. This long-lived architectural grass is very ornamental and provides interest throughout the late fall and winter months. It can be used in water-wise landscapes, prairies and wildflower plantings, and as a backdrop to beds of wildflowers. It is an excellent plant for use in wildlife habitats and provides excellent erosion control on slopes. The flowering stems with their seed heads make a lovely cut flower.

  • Grows up to 2-4 ft. tall (60-120 cm) and 1-2 ft. wide (30-60 cm).
  • Performs best in full sun to part shade in low fertility, dry, well-drained soils. Drought tolerant once established.
  • Excellent choice for drought-prone gardens, this architectural grass is perfect as a garden accent or in a wildflower meadow or prairie.
  • No serious pest or disease issues.
  • May be cut back in late winter (not during the growing season).
  • Propagate by seed, root division.
  • Native to the southeastern, east-central, and south-central parts of the United States, where it occurs from New Jersey south to Florida and west to Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas.

Buy Andropogon ternarius (Splitbeard Bluestem)

Requirements

Hardiness 6 – 10
Plant Type Ornamental Grasses
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Early,Mid,Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Winter
Height 2' – 4' (60cm – 120cm)
Spread 1' – 2' (30cm – 60cm)
Spacing 24" (60cm)
Water Needs Low
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Well-Drained
Characteristics Dried Arrangements, Showy
Native Plants United States, Midwest, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Missouri, Northeast, Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, Southeast, Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Southwest, Oklahoma, Texas
Tolerance Drought, Dry Soil
Attracts Birds, Butterflies
Garden Styles Informal and Cottage, Prairie and Meadow

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Lisa Roper, Chanticleer Gardens

While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.


Requirements

Hardiness 6 – 10
Plant Type Ornamental Grasses
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Early,Mid,Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Winter
Height 2' – 4' (60cm – 120cm)
Spread 1' – 2' (30cm – 60cm)
Spacing 24" (60cm)
Water Needs Low
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Well-Drained
Characteristics Dried Arrangements, Showy
Native Plants United States, Midwest, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Missouri, Northeast, Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, Southeast, Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Southwest, Oklahoma, Texas
Tolerance Drought, Dry Soil
Attracts Birds, Butterflies
Garden Styles Informal and Cottage, Prairie and Meadow

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Andropogon ternarius (Splitbeard Bluestem)

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