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Plant - summer
Chino Valley - near end of Peavine Tr
Sue Smith
Yavapai County Native & Naturalized Plants

Bouteloua gracilis - blue grama

Synonyms: Bouteloua oligostachya, Chondrosum gracile, Chondrosum oligostachyum

Other Common Names: eyelash grass

Plant Form:Grass

Family: Poaceae

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Plant - cultivated

Chino Valley - near end of Peavine Tr Sue Smith
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Plant - summer

Chino Valley - near end of Peavine Tr Sue Smith
Plant image

Chino Valley - near end of Peavine Tr Sue Smith
Plant image

Chino Valley - near end of Peavine Tr John Kava
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Spikes w/o seeds

Chino Valley - near end of Peavine Tr Sue Smith
  Grass Description -   Glossary of Grass Terminology

Origin: Native    Season: Warm
Habitat Description: Open rocky slopes, plains, forest openings, and mountain meadows.
Plant Communities: Interior Chaparral, Semidesert Grasslands, Pinyon Juniper Woodland, Montane Conifer Forest
Elevation: 4000 - 8000 feet

Similar Species: Bouteloua hirsuta

General Description

Desc: Densely tufted bunchgrass, semi-sod or ring forming, sometimes has rhizomes. Leaves mostly basal and short. Seedheads erect ending in 1 to 3 comb-like branches of spikelets. Older clumps may die in center leaving a ring of active growth.
Identification notes: Tufted perennial, stems mostly erect. Leaves basal, mostly flat, curled when dry. Seedheads typically 2 branches of 80 one-sided spikelets of 1 bisexual with a hairy lemma and 1 rudimentary, branch tip not exceeding the spikelets. Glumes do not fall.
Grass Type: Perennial bunchgrass  Rhizomes: Y  Stolons: N
Large Dense Clump (> 2 feet): N  Bushy (highly branched): N
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 typically bear 2 branches of spikelets, sometimes 3 or 4. Spikelets have 1 sterile floret and 1 fertile floret, with tufts of hair at the base of fertile floret. Central and lateral awns <1/4 inch, glumes hairy on midvein, do not fall with seed.

Vegetative Characteristics

Blade Hairy: Y  Blade with White Margin: N  Blade Cross Section: Flat or involute  
Blade Notes: Blades 2 to 10 inches long, 1/8 to 1/4 inch wide, flat to involute and curled at maturity, hairs usually present basally.
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 smooth or sparsely hairy; ligules a fringe of hairs less than 1/16 inch, often with marginal tufts of long hairs.

Forage Value: Good forage value for livestock and wildlife, retains its palatability when mature or during dry periods.

  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  
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