Little Bluestem (Schizachyrium scoparium)
[skiz-ah-KEER-ee-um skoe-PAR-ee-um]

Deciduous Perennial Upright, Clump in the Poaceae Family
Buy Little Bluestem
Size Notes Price Availability
#1 gallon Field $13.13 Likely available
5/30 - 6/2
6/13 - 6/16
7/4 - 7/7
#3 gallon Field $38.16 Likely available
5/30 - 6/2
6/13 - 6/16
7/4 - 7/7
38 Flat Field $100.13 Likely available
5/30 - 6/2
6/13 - 6/16
7/4 - 7/7
Tray of 10 4" pots Field $62.78 Likely available
5/30 - 6/2
6/13 - 6/16
7/4 - 7/7


Schizachyrium scoparium, commonly known as little bluestem or beard grass, is a species of North American prairie grass native to most of the contiguous United States as well as a small area north of the Canada–US border and northern Mexico. It is most common in the Midwestern prairies.

A native ornamental grass with attractive blue-green foliage.  Purplish bronze seed heads and yellow-orange leaves make for great fall interest in the landscape.  It is attractive planted en masse and would make an excellent addition to a rain garden. It performs best in average, dry to medium moisture, well-drained soil in full sun.  However, it does tolerate a wide range of soil conditions including infertility and clay.  It has drought resistance once established. It is well-adapted to southern climates as it tolerates high heat and humidity. It is found naturally in a wide range of moist to dry habitats. Cut back to the ground in early spring to promote new attractive growth.

Little Bluestem is a perennial, warm-season grass that may grow to 5 feet. The leaves and stems frequently have a bluish cast in summer, while the fall color is a very warm copper that does not fade throughout winter. 




Provides excellent cover year round. This is a larval host plant that supports various skipper larvae and Common Wood-Nymph (Cercyonis pegala) which have one brood from late May to October. Adult Common Wood-Nymph butterflies feed on rotting fruit and flower nectar. Seeds are eaten by songbirds and small mammals.

Plant Data

Mature Size 24 - 48 inches tall. 24 - 30 inches wide.
Growth Rate Moderate
Sun Exposure Full Sun - Full Sun
Moisture Tolerance Medium : Once established, it is drought tolerant.
Zones 3a - 10b (Usually hardy to -40° F)
Tags Attracts Birds, Attracts Butterflies, Attracts Pollinators, Attracts Wildlife, Colorful Foliage, Container, Deciduous, Deer Resistant, Drought Tolerant, Erosion Control, Full Sun, Full Sun, Good for Accents, Good for Borders, Good for Mass Planting, Good for Rain Garden, Grasses, Grown For Attractive Foliage, Illinois Native, Low Maintenance, Medium, Medium, Most Popular, Native to North America, Normal Soil, Perennial, Popular For Fall, Rabbit Resistant, Tolerant of Clay Soil, Tolerant of Moist Soil, Tolerant of Salt, Tolerant of Sandy Soil, Well-Drained Soil, Wet Site Tolerant, Woodland Garden Deer Resistant Perennials, Large Perennials, Ornamental Grass, Partial Sun Perennials
Bloom Period June - October
Flower Color Purplish Bronze
Foliage Color



More Info from Experts

Commonly Planted with...

Showy aster (Aster spectabilis) Downy wood mint (Blephilia ciliata) Sideoats grama (Bouteloua curtipendula) Wine cups (Callirhoe involucrata) Northern seaoates (Chasmanthium latifolium) Lanceleaf tickseed (Coreopsis lanceolata)

Photos of This with...

Big Blue Stem, Bonanza Deep Orange French Marigold, EnduraScape Blue Verbena, EnduraScape Hot Pink Verbena
Want More photos of this plant? Try Google Image Search!

Pricing and Availability History

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Limited Availability

We try very hard to source exactly what you’d like, but sometimes growers run out of plants! While this variety is a great deal at the price shown, we know that it has limited availability. If you want the plant even if it might be more expensive, or in a different size or quantity -- after you place your order, just send us a quick note at Then, we’ll try to get you some version of this from one of our growers. And if we can’t get it from anywhere, of course, we’ll send a refund!

Field-Grown vs. Greenhouse-Grown Plants

Plants which are well-adapted to our local climate are most often field-grown (outside). Field-grown plants are generally cheaper and have the advantage of already somewhat acclimated to our cold winters, but that means they’re not artificially far along in the spring and tend to bloom at the normal time in our area.

Spring annuals and tender perennials are typically grown in Greenhouses so they can be ready and luxurious exactly when customers want them. Some perennials are also “forced” into early bloom in greenhouses. In May, there can be a very big difference between field-grown and greenhouse-grown plants of the same type. The latter typically look good right away (so they’re a great choice where that’s important), but we typically pay a premium for it.

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About Ordering From The Plant Club

To secure the best prices for club members and make sure we know the current plants available from each nursery, we take orders only a couple of times a month.

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No Pricing or Availability Right Now

We order from a rotating cast of the best nurseries in the Great Lakes region. It looks like we've offered this plant in the past, but the nurseries we're working with this week don't appear to have it in stock at the moment.

Our goal is to bring as many plants together under "one roof" as possible, so we'll try hard to make it available again in the future!