Drought Tolerant Ornamental Grasses

Grass is more than just turf in your yard that you have to cut regularly. Ornamental grasses, especially those that are drought tolerant, can be every bit as striking in the landscape as flowering plants are. Drought tolerant ornamental grasses often grow well in poor, rocky soils where flowers or vegetables will not grow.

Big Bluestem

Sometimes called turkey foot grass, big bluestem grass (Andropogon gerardii) can grow up to 10 feet high. The stems take on a bluish tint as they dry out late in the growing season. It acquired the common name of "turkey foot" because the flowering heads have three finger-like branches, called rames, which resemble a turkey's foot.

Little Bluestem

Little bluestem (Schizachyrium scoparium) is a medium tall grass, growing about 3-feet high. It has bluish shoots with gray-green foliage that is often purple at the base of the plant. The entire plant takes on a reddish tint after being touched by frost. The flowers of little bluestem grow in pairs. It tolerates drought well and is fairly tolerant of shady conditions.

Blue Grama

Blue grama (Bouteloua gracilis) grows well on soil that is rocky or clayey. It spreads by stolons and quickly forms a mat. Blue grama grass blooms from late June through September. The flowering heads contain densely flowered branches that terminate in a spike. The flowers are showy in a pastel shade of peach.

Keywords: drought tolerant ornamental grasses, ornamental grasses for dry areas, grow ornamental grasses