Nodding Onion Gardens

Native Plant Nursery

Where Wildflowers Grow

Columbia Station, Ohio, USA


 Sporobolus heterolepis - Prairie Dropseed

 Prairie Dropseed -
Lifestyle Landscaping - Prairie Dropseed

Ohio Native Plant - Natural Range

Sporobolus heterolepis

Visit the USDA Natural Resource Conservation Services website to view the natural range of Prairie Dropseed
Ohio Division of Natural Areas & Preserves indicates Prairie Dropseed as Threatened in the state of Ohio
LEAP (The Lake Erie Allegheny Partnership for Biodiversity) - Plant of the Year 2019
  Sporobolus heterolepis
Sporobolus heterolepis - Prairie Moon Nursery

Propagation Notes

Stratification - cold, dry storage

Planted seed  - December 23, 2018

Growth Noted - December 31, 2018 - Germination was initially spotty. We keep our house at 65°F. I suspect this is a bit to cool for a warm season grass. Significant growth noted January 14, 2019. Seedling are thumbnail size

Transplanted - 18 Very small seedlings into 3 in pots. Interested in learning how seedlings handled being moved.
Findings - I learned the hard way, it is best not to move these seedlings when they are young as they don't handle the move well at all.

Second batch - Seed was cold moist stratified for 30 days. Better results were noted, growth with this grass is especially slow. Seedlings will remain in orginal cell until spring.

Cultivation Information - Prairie Dropseed

Height -
1 to 3 ft
Blooms -  August - October
Sun -
Full to part sun
Spacing - 24 to 30 inches
Hardy Zone - 3 to 9
Soil -
Dry to moist

Warm Season Grass - It is the happiest during warmer months

Family - Grass family (Poaceae)

Wildlife Significance

Cover - Protection for wildlife

Source - Nesting material

Pollinated - Wind

Fragrant - Literature describes it as having a licorice or popcorn smell. Which is odd as it is wind pollinated. Perhaps deer aren't fond of popcorn.

Seed - Birds and small mammals

Host plant - Aflexia rubranura, Memnonia panzeri. These Leaf hoppers are a food source for: birds. lizards, spiders and assassin bugs

Deer - Not a deer favorite but we know what happens if they are hungry enough

For detailed information visit the Illinois Wildflower website

Seed Provenance - Sporobolus heterolepis

Prairie Moon Nursery & Ohio Praire Nursery 2018