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Little Bluestem
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Monocots
(unranked): Commelinids
Order: Poales
Family: Poaceae
Genus: Schizachyrium
Species: S. scoparium
Binomial name
Schizachyrium scoparium

Little bluestem (Schizachyrium scoparium) is a North American prairie grass. Little bluestem is a perennial bunchgrass, and is prominent in tallgrass prairie, along with big bluestem (Andropogon gerardii), indiangrass (Sorghastrum nutans) and switchgrass (Panicum virgatum). It is a warm-season species, meaning it employs the C4 photosynthetic pathway.

Little Bluestem grows to a typical height of 3 feet (compare Big Bluestem). Although it has a blue tint in the spring, in fall its predominant color is more red, which color it may retain throughout winter into spring.

Little Bluestem was designated the official state grass of Nebraska on May 5, 1969. It is also known as "beard grass" and grows abundant in prairies.


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