Vascular Plants of the Gila Wilderness

Presented in Association with the
Western New Mexico University Department of Natural Sciences

Schizachyrium scoparium (Michaux) Nash
(Little Bluestem)

Family: Poaceae

Status: Native

Andropogon scoparius Michaux var. scoparius
Andropogon scoparius Michaux var. frequens C.E. Hubbard
Schizachyrium scoparium (Michaux) Nash var. frequens (C.E. Hubbard) Gould

Schizachyrium scoparium is a perennial tuftgrass. The spikelets are present in pairs, one sessile and the other pedicelled. In Schizachyrium scoparium, unlike Schizachyrium cirratum, the pedicelled spikelet is shorter than the sessile one. In S. scoparium, the pedicel is quite hairy, narrow and long. In S. cirratum, the pedicel is broad and stiff. Schizachyrium scoparium is found in nearly every county in New Mexico.
Please click on an image for a larger file.

Schizachyrium scoparium, photo Russ Kleinman, Tyrone, alongside Rte. 90

Schizachyrium scoparium, Schizachyrium cirratum, closeup of spikes, photo Russ Kleinman, Myer Cyn., Nov. 28, 2007

Schizachyrium scoparium, pedicelled spikelet much smaller than sessile one, photo Russ Kleinman, Myer Cyn., Nov. 28, 2007

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