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Big bluestem

Gramineae Andropogon gerardii Vitm.

Source: Magness et al. 1971

This is a vigorous, rather coarse bunchgrass, native over most of the United States; but of major importance in the Central States and the eastern edge of the Great Plains. The stems, which may reach to 6 feet, are solid between nodes. The leaves reach 12 inches or more in length, and are 0.5 inch or less in width and hairy near the base. Growth starts late in the spring and continues throughout the summer, providing good grazing for all kinds of livestock. Good quality hay is produced if mowed before seed heads have formed. Roots penetrate deeply; but the grass thrives best on moist, well drained soils of good quality. Propagation is by seeds.

Last update February 18, 1999 by ch