Plant Image
Plant - fall
Rimrock Verde Valley

Yavapai County Native & Naturalized Plants

Sporobolus cryptandrus - sand dropseed

Synonyms: Agrostis cryptandra,
Plant Form: Grass

Family: Poaceae

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Plant - summer
Fair Oaks Rd
Sue Smith
Plant - summer
Fair Oaks Rd
Sue Smith
Fair Oaks Rd
Sue Smith
Tufts of hair at top of sheath
Fair Oaks Rd
Sue Smith
Rimrock Verde Valley
John Kava
Fair Oaks Rd
Sue Smith
  Grass Description -   Glossary of Grass Terminology

Origin: Native    Season: Warm
Habitat Description: Found on sandy soils of dry plains, slopes, and washes, rocky slopes and limestone ridges, in desert scrub, pinyon-juniper woodlands, pine forests and desert grasslands.
Plant Communities:Desert Scrub, Interior Chaparral, Semidesert Grasslands, Pinyon Juniper Woodland, Montane Conifer Forest
Elevation: 200 - 7000 feet

Similar Species: Sporabolus contractus, S. flexuosus
General Description

Desc: Erect, tufted perennial grass with round, unbranched stem, 2 to 4 feet tall, depending upon precipitation. Main characteristic is the conspicuous tuft of long white hairs at the leaf collar.
Identification Notes: Tufted erect perennial, stems sometimes bent at base. Collar and ligule hairy. Sheath often hairy on the margins. Seedhead partially included in sheath, initially contracted, open at maturity, pyramidal, densely flowered. Spikelets one flowered, unawned.
Grass Type: Perennial bunchgrass  Rhizomes: N  Stolons: N
Large Dense Clump (> 2 feet): N  Bushy (highly branched): N
Height with Seedheads: Greater than 36 inches
Seedhead Structure: Branched - open and spreading  Seedhead Droops: N
Flowering Period: Jun - Oct
Flower Characteristics

Number of Flowers per Spikelet: One-flowered  Spikelets One-sided: N
Awns: Absent   Three Awns: N  Awns Bent: N
Flower and Seedhead Notes: Seedhead 6 to 20 inches long and 1/2 to 4-1/2 inches wide, partially or totally enclosed on one side by the upper sheath. Upper branches are spikelet bearing to the bases.
Vegetative Charcteristics

Blade Hairy: N    Blade with White Margins: N    Blade Cross section: Flat or folded
Blade Notes: Blades often at near right angle to stem. 3 to 10 inches long, 1/4 inch wide, flat or folded. May be rolled inward when dry.
Sheath Hairy: Y    Tuft of Hairs at top of Sheath or Collar: Y    Ligules: Membranous and hairy
Auricles (Ear-like lobes at collar area: N

Forage Value: Fair to good for livestock and poor for wildlife while actively growing, declines rapidly with maturity.

  Arizona Cooperative Extension
Yavapai County
840 Rodeo Dr #C
Prescott, AZ 86305
(928) 445-6590
Version 8.0  
Last Updated: Dec 13, 2022
Content Questions/Comments: Email Matt Halldorson  
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