Friday, July 17, 2009

Prairie Dropseed

Prairie dropseed of Sporobolus heterolepsis is one of the most garden worthy grasses in the world. This native grass stays fairly short compared to most full-sun clumping grasses and it does well on alkaline or calcereous soils. In the OPSEU memorial garden it is the most abundant species - creating structure throughout the year, providng a full ground cover to deter weeds and reduce evaporation of moisure from the soil.

Prairie dropseed is rather slow to develop but also long-lived, establishing a sustainable meadow. So while there is no dramatic flower, the form makes it a perfect foil in the garden. Turning a golden colour over the winter the grass also tends to have a scent of toasted cilantro.

Watch for it this fall.

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