SIDEOATS GRAMA

Bouteloua curtipendula

Sideoats Grama, Bouteloua curtipendula is adapted to a broad range of well-drained upland sandy to clayey textured soils, ranging from deep to shallow in depth, but does not do well on loose sands and dense clay soils. It does well on well-drained uplands, ridges, rocky open slopes, woodlands, and forest openings.  Growing in association with blue grama (Bouteloua gracilis), western wheatgrass (Pascopyrum smithii), and little bluestem it has excellent vigor and persistence, providing erosion cover in areas with annual precipitation ranging from 14 to 16 inches.

Sideoats grama is moderately drought tolerant, but less so than blue grama. It is somewhat tolerant of semi-shaded conditions and can be found in open woodlands. It will suffer damage from wildfire or controlled burns when actively growing and under drought stress conditions. In a dormant state it is fairly tolerant of fire, which is used for early weed control and field maintenance. It is also fairly tolerant of spring flooding.

Conservation Uses: Sideoats grama is recommended in grass mixtures for range and pasture, bank stabilization, critical areas, and native gardens. Successful seeding can be obtained on rocky, stony, shallow sites; and has been observed in nearly pure stands on clayey outcrops, rocky hillsides, and breaks.

Erosion control: Sideoats grama, with its sod-forming ability, performs well as an erosion control species when mixed with the other plants naturally associated with it.

SPECS: Genus: Bouteloua ; Species: Curtipendula; Plant Type: Grass; Life Cycle: Perennial; Sun Exposure: Full Sun; Soil Moisture: Medium Dry, Dry; Height: 1′ — 3′; Spread: 2′; Plant Spacing: 1′ — 2′; Bloom Time: August — September; Bloom Color: Orange, Purple; Advantages: Deep root system, Erosion control, Grassland restoration, Low maintenance; USDA Zone: 3 — 9; Attracts: Butterflies, Songbirds; Tolerant: Deer, Drought, Dry soils, Flooding, Rocky soil, Salt; Plant Community: Companion plants include: Lead plant, big and little bluestems, silk and fall asters, pasque flower, flowering spurge, false boneset, fringed puccoon, prickly pear cactus, purple prairie clover, Dyer's weed, prairie dropseed and prairie smoke.;