• AGM plants

    AGM plants have been through a rigorous trial and assessment programme. They are:

    • Excellent for ordinary use in appropriate conditions
    • Available to buy
    • Of good constitution
    • Essentially stable in form & colour
    • Reasonably resistant to pests & diseases

Schizachyrium scoparium

blue stem

© Dorling Kindersley Ltd
  • Other common names blue stem
    broom beard grass

    broom grass
    prairie grass
    wire grass
    little bluestem

    see more
  • Synonyms Andropogon scoparius

  • Family Poaceae

  • Genus Schizachrium are deciduous, perennial grasses with flat, linear leaves, upright growth and narrowly-branched flower sprays

  • Details S. scoparium is a densely-tufted, deciduous, perennial grass producing a mound of narrow, arching, blue-green leaves. Upright, silvery reddish-brown flowers appear in late summer. The whole plant turns orange-brown in autumn

  • Plant range North America


  • Foliage Deciduous

  • Habit Bushy

  • Hardiness

    Hardiness ratings

    All ratings refer to the UK growing conditions unless otherwise stated. Minimum temperature ranges (in degrees C) are shown in brackets

    • H1a - Under glass all year (>15C)
    • H1b - Can be grown outside in the summer (10 - 15)
    • H1c - Can be grown outside in the summer (5 - 10)
    • H2 - Tolerant of low temperatures, but not surviving being frozen (1 to 5)
    • H3 - Hardy in coastal and relatively mild parts of the UK (-5 to 1)
    • H4 - Hardy through most of the UK (-10 to -5)
    • H5 - Hardy in most places throughout the UK even in severe winters (-15 to -10)
    • H6 - Hardy in all of UK and northern Europe (-20 to -15)
    • H7 - Hardy in the severest European continental climates (< -20)




  • Full Sun

  • Aspect South-facing or West-facing

  • Exposure Exposed


  • Sand


  • Chalk


  • Loam


  • MoistureWell-drained

  • SoilSand, Chalk, Loam

  • pHNeutral, Acid, Alkaline


  • Ultimate height 0.5-1 metres

  • Ultimate spread 0.5-1 metres

  • Time to ultimate height 2-5 years

How to grow

Cultivation Grow in very well-drained soil in full sun. See ornamental grasses cultivation

Propagation Propagate by seed or division

Suggested planting locations and garden types Banks and Slopes Drought Resistant Flower borders and beds City & Courtyard Gardens Gravel Garden Prairie Planting Cottage & Informal Garden

How to care

Pruning Cut down old stems and leaves in late winter

Pests Generally problem free

Diseases Generally problem free

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