PRAIRIE DROPSEED (Sporobolus heterolepis)
This fine-leaved bunch-grass forms beautiful circular clumps with the leaves radiating outward. Older clumps tend to become donut-shaped, allowing other species to grow in the center of the clump. The flowers aren’t particularly showy – in fact they can be difficult to see against a prairie backdrop – but they stand out in an oddly different way. They let off a wonderful peach-like scent that fills the air around them and will even saturate your pants when you walk through a meadow of it. Prairie dropseed is a larval host plant for the endangered Powesheik skipperling.
Life Cycle: perennial, warm season
Sun Exposure: full sun
Bloom Period: late July – September
Height: 1 – 2.5 ft
Soil: dry – moist