Contact Us Host an Event Volunteer Join

Plant Database

Search for native plants by scientific name, common name or family. If you are not sure what you are looking for, try the Combination Search or our Recommended Species lists.

Enter a Plant Name:
Or choose a plant family:

Poa alpina

Poa alpina L.

Alpine Blue Grass, Alpine Bluegrass

Poaceae (Grass Family)

Synonym(s): Poa alpina ssp. vivipara, Poa alpina var. vivipara, Poa vivipara

USDA Symbol: POAL2

USDA Native Status: L48 (N), AK (N), CAN (N), GL (N)

The short, stout, densely tufted stems are 4-12 in. in height with short blades and a compact, rounded to short-pyramidal, purplish seed head. The leaves of this cool-season perennial form a dense mat, providing good soil cover.


From the Image Gallery

No images of this plant

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Grass/Grass-like
Root Type: Fibrous
Leaf Arrangement: Alternate
Leaf Complexity: Simple
Leaf Venation: Parallel
Leaf Pubescence: Glabrous
Inflorescence: Panicle
Fruit Type: Achene , Caryopsis
Size Class: 0-1 ft.

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: Pink , Purple


USA: AK , CO , ID , MI , MT , NM , OR , UT , WA , WY
Canada: BC , NS
Native Distribution: Arctic regions of the Northern Hemisphere, s. to Que., n. MI & the alpine summits of CO, UT, WA & OR
Native Habitat: Alpine meadows; arctic regions

Growing Conditions

Light Requirement: Sun
Soil Moisture: Dry
Soil Description: Rocky soils.
Conditions Comments: Not Available


Description: Propagate by seed.
Seed Collection: Not Available
Seed Treatment: Not Available
Commercially Avail: yes

Find Seed or Plants

Find seed sources for this species at the Native Seed Network.

View propagation protocol from Native Plants Network.

National Wetland Indicator Status

This information is derived from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers National Wetland Plant List, Version 3.1 (Lichvar, R.W. 2013. The National Wetland Plant List: 2013 wetland ratings. Phytoneuron 2013-49: 1-241). Click here for map of regions.

From the National Organizations Directory

According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:

Native Seed Network - Corvallis, OR

Additional resources

USDA: Find Poa alpina in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Poa alpina in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Poa alpina


Record Modified: 2007-01-01
Research By: TWC Staff

Go back