Plants & Gardens Blog

Quiz: Which Grass Is Which?

At first glance, all grasses might look the same to you, but there is actually quite a lot of variation from species to species, especially if you closely examine the plant's inflorescence, or flower cluster. The four species of grass below all grow in the Native Flora Garden. Read the plant names and descriptions, and then try to match them to the photos below.

Big Bluestem (Andropogon gerardii): Purplish spikelets that branch out like a turkey’s foot

Switchgrass (Panicum virgatum): Open, airy inflorescences made up of ascending (upward-pointing) spikelets

Purpletop (Tridens flavus): Drooping, purplish spikelets

Indiangrass (Sorghastrum nutans): Silky-textured inflorescences in golden brown that fades to a more muted tan

How many can you identify?

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