Plant Image
Plant - summer
Chino Valley - N Reed Rd
Sue Smith
Yavapai County Native & Naturalized Plants

Bouteloua eriopoda - black grama

Synonyms: Chondrosum eriopodum

Plant Form:Grass

Family: Poaceae

line decor
  Home   Plant Communities Plant List Search Forbs and Subshrubs Search Grasses Search Woody Plants Additional Resources About this Website
line decor

Click on Any Image for a Larger View

Plant image
Plant - summer

Chino Valley - N Reed Rd Sue Smith
Plant image
Seedhead - mature

Chino Valley - N Reed Rd John Kava
Plant image
Grazed with seedhead stems

Chino Valley - N Reed Rd John Kava
Plant image

Chino Valley - N Reed Rd Sue Smith
Plant image

Chino Valley - N Reed Rd Sue Smith
Plant image
Hairy internode

Chino Valley - N Reed Rd Sue Smith
  Grass Description -   Glossary of Grass Terminology

Origin: Native    Season: Warm
Habitat Description: Thrives best in open grasslands on dry, gravelly or sandy soils. Grows in dry plains, foothills, and open forested slopes, often in shrubby habitats, and also in waste ground.
Plant Communities: Interior Chaparral, Semidesert Grasslands, Pinyon Juniper Woodland, Disturbed Areas
Elevation: 3000 - 5500 feet

Similar Species: Bouteloua gracilis, Bouteloua hirsuta

General Description

Desc: Sprawling, wiry, thin, weak stems covered with fine hairs. Stems are bent and spreading, lower internodes are densely hairy. Seedheads have 4 to 5 comb-like branches. Stoloniferous and often rhizomatous. Frequently grows in almost pure stands.
Identification notes: Tufted perennial with hard crown, wiry stolons, hairy-felty, trailing, mostly basal stems. Leaves small, sheaths shorter than internodes, one to many short, 1-sided spikes. Lemma bearded at base tapering to a terminal awn <3 mm and 2 smaller lateral awns.
Grass Type: Perennial mat or sod-forming  Rhizomes: Y  Stolons: Y
Large Dense Clump (> 2 feet): N  Bushy (highly branched): Y
Height with Seedheads: 12 to 24 inches
Seedhead Structure: Branched - comblike branches  Seedhead Droops: N
Flowering Period: Jul - Oct

Flower Characteristics

Number of Flowers per Spikelet: Multi-flowered  Spikelets One-sided: Y
Awns: Less than 1/4 inch   Three Awns: Y  Awns Bent: N

Flower and Seedhead Notes: Seedheads 3/4 to 6 inches long, with 3 to 8 primary branches. Fertile lemma is bearded at base, tapering to a stout terminal awn <1/8 inch long and reduced lateral awns. Sterile floret is reduced to a lemma with 3 long awns <1/2 inch long.

Vegetative Characteristics

Blade Hairy: Y  Blade with White Margin: N  Blade Cross Section: Flat or involute  
Blade Notes: Blades 3/4 to 3 inches long and <1/8 inch wide, flat or involute and twisted at the tips. Upper leaf surfaces are hairy.
Sheath Hairy: Y  Tuft of Hairs Top of Sheath or Collar: Y  Ligules: Hairy
Auricles (Ear-like lobes at base of blades): N
Vegetative Notes: Sheaths mostly smooth without hairs or sparsely soft-hairy, usually soft-hairy near the ligules. Ligules <1/16 inch, a fringe of hairs.

Forage Value: Black grama is considered excellent forage for all livestock classes and wildlife.

  Arizona Cooperative Extension
Yavapai County
840 Rodeo Dr #C
Prescott, AZ 86305
(928) 445-6590
Version 8.0  
Last Updated: Feb 16, 2020  
Content Questions/Comments: Email Jeff Schalau  
Legal Disclaimer