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Carried by 11 nurseries
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Plant type



6 - 24 in Tall
2 ft Wide



Growth rate

Fast, Moderate



Flowering season


Common uses

Containers, Deer resistant, Groundcover, Lawn alternative

Blue Grama (Bouteloua gracilis) is a widespread, long-lived, warm-season, perennial grass native to North America. It is most commonly found from Alberta east to Manitoba and south across the Rocky Mountains, Great Plains, and Midwest states to Mexico. In California, it is found primarily in arid mountains of San Bernardino County.

Blue Grama accounts for most of the net primary productivity in the shortgrass prairie of the central and southern Great Plains. Blue Grama grows on a wide array of topographic positions, and in a range of well-drained soil types, from fine- to coarse-textured.

Roots generally extend 1 to 1.5 feet from the edge of the plant, and 3 to 6 feet deep. Maximum rooting depth is approximately 6.5 feet. In recent years, Blue Grama has become a popular garden accent grass, due to its green to greyish color and interesting seed heads, which resemble small pennants. 'Blond Ambition" is a popular cultivar.


Full Sun, Partial Shade


Very Low

Summer irrigation

Max 2x / month once established

Ease of care


Cold tolerance

Tolerates cold to 15° F

Soil drainage


Soil description

Tolerates a variety of soils as long as adequate drainage is provided.


Pruning is not necessary, but plant can be cut back in winter when dormant.


For propagating by seed: No treatment.

Sunset Zones

2, 3, 7*, 8*, 9*, 14*, 15*, 16*, 17, 18*, 19*, 20*, 21*, 22*, 23*, 24*

In the garden it can be used with a wide variety of native plants.


Butterflies and moths supported

4 confirmed and 1 likely

Confirmed Likely

Orange Skipperling

Copaeodes aurantiaca

Pahaska Skipper

Hesperia pahaska

Uncas Skipper

Hesperia uncas

Ridings' Satyr

Neominois ridingsii

Site type

Sandy rocky slopes, flats, prairies, plains, open rocky woodlands below 7000 feet

Plant communities

Pinyon-Juniper Woodland, Yellow Pine Forest,