Bouteloua gracilis, commonly called blue grama or mosquito grass, is a tufted, warm-season, Missouri native grass noted for its distinctive arrangement of mosquito larvae-like seed spikes, which hang from only one side of its flowering stems. It is native to prairies, plains, open rocky woodlands, and railroad tracks throughout the Western U.S. It was a dominant grass of the dry shortgrass prairies.
Narrow, bluish-gray leaf blades typically form a dense clump growing 12-15" tall. Foliage turns golden brown in autumn, sometimes also developing attractive hues of orange and red. Inflorescences of purplish-tinged flowers appear on arching stems above the foliage in early to mid-summer, typically bringing the total height of the clump to 20" tall.
They are quickly grown, on average, in dry to medium, well-drained soils in full sun. Can tolerate a wide range of soils, except poorly-drained wet ones. Excellent drought tolerance. Freely self-seeds. Cut to the ground in late winter before new shoots appear.
Light: Full Sun
Zone: 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10
Origin: Southern & Western U.S.