What Is a Prairie Dropseed Plant?

What Is a Prairie Dropseed Plant?

Posted by Tammy Sons on Dec 15, 2022

All About the Prairie Dropseed Plant

An ornamental grass you can add to your garden is the prairie dropseed plant. Also known as Sporobolus heterolepis, the dropseed can significantly add to a wildlife or prairie garden. Below is more information about this dropseed grass plant.

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Prairie Dropseed Plant Facts

The dropseed is native to the central part of North America. In the wild, the prairie dropseed can be seen growing in Texas and up to Saskatchewan. It can grow in USDA zones 3-9, tolerable in several growing climates, making it a diverse plant.

The Missouri Botanical Garden declared the Sporobolus heterolepis a Plant of Merit in 2005. The Wisconsin Nursery and Landscape Association gave the plant the herbaceous perennial for 2018, as it grows in the wild in parts of the state.

Sporobolus heterolepis Information

The prairie grass can grow two to three feet wide and up to three feet high. It grows out of a fibrous root mass, spilling out on all sides like a water fountain with its thin, green blades of grass.

In the summertime, prairie grass will bloom in shades of brown and pink. The flowers are fragrant and add color to the green, grassy plant.

Once the flowers mature and fall off, hard and round seeds grow in their place. Once grown, these drop to the ground, where their name comes from. The seeds can attract birds and other wildlife to the plant.

Native Americans use the seed to make flour, which you can use to include in many recipes and dishes.

Grow the Prairie Dropseed Plant

Those who choose to grow the prairie dropseed in their garden need patience since it can take up to five years to mature.

When the plant reaches total- growth, it does not need much care or water. Just cut down the older grass in the late winter or early spring so that new blades have plenty of room to grow.

The green blades turn orange-gold in the fall and can stay this way throughout winter to create some interest in the garden this year.

The prairie dropseed looks great in meadows, mixed borders, along the road, and rainscaping. It can be grown as a tall ground cover with other plants for a diverse look.

You can also grow other plants found in the wild with prairie dropseed. Native plants to grow with dropseed are phlox, grama grasses, and leadplant, to name a few.

Prairie dropseed is an excellent choice for those who want something different than traditional grass in their yard.