Three-flower melic, Tall melicgrass, Threeflower melicgrass, Melicgrass
Poaceae (Grass Family)
Strickland, Sam C.
2 or 3 in number, but 2 most common in the southern parts of its range, which dangle in loose panicles on the slender, arching stems of this 3-5 ft. grass. Leaf blades usually flattened. Spikelets longer than they are wide.
A very graceful-looking, rhizomatous, cool-season grass usually found in part-shade in savannahs and open woodlands. In
the northern reaches of its range, it is called Three-Flower Melic, because its florets,
appearing in spring, are in groups of three. Further south, including in Texas, the florets
are most often in groups of two. However many there are, they are white and showy swaying above the spring green foliage. By summer, the grass has gone to seed, turning tan as the hot months progress. It is somewhat of a summer dormant and is often cut back in early fall, just before the next seasons growth begins. In
the wild, it is associated with Wild Hyacinth (Camassia scilloides
) and oak or juniper savannahs.
Image Gallery: 6 photo(s) available
Bloom InformationBloom Color: White
Bloom Time: Mar , Apr , May
, WI Native Distribution: PA
to extreme s.e. MN
s. to n. VA,
w. NC, OK, TX,
Coahuila, and Nuevo Leon. Native Habitat:
Open woods; rocky grasslands; bluffs; alluvial flats
Growing ConditionsWater Use: Medium
Light Requirement: Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Moist , Dry
Soil Description: Well-drained, rocky or sandy, acid or calcareous loams
Conditions Comments: The more sun it gets, the quicker it will turn brown and go dormant during hot, dry summers. The more moisture it gets, the more sun it can take.
BenefitUse Ornamental: An attractive, shade-loving grass with decorative flowers and seedheads, used as an accent or drift planting.
Conspicuous Flowers: yes