Big Bluestem (Andropogon gerardii ‘Blackhawks’) is a large, ornamental grass with foliage that changes colour with the season. This particular grass thrives at Assiniboine Park – many websites claim it grows to approximately five feet tall, while we have specimens reaching closer to seven feet tall!

This ornamental grass is commonly used to provide height and colour to a garden, and as such, is well suited to gardens here in Manitoba that may appear scarce in the fall and upcoming winter months. Big Bluestem is a perennial and a solid stemmed grass. It was once widespread across the prairies in North America.

Big Bluestem is a low maintenance plant that grows easily in dry to medium conditions and full sun. Leaves are gray to blue green in spring, green with red in summer, and after frost in autumn, appear reddish bronze with lavender tones.

Big Bluestem is currently growing at the Seasonal Garden at the Gardens at The Leaf, and in the English Garden at Assiniboine Park.

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