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.
Calamovilfa longifolia (Hook.) Scribn.
Prairie Sandreed, Sandreed Grass
Poaceae (Grass Family)
USDA Symbol: calo
USDA Native Status: L48 (N), CAN (N)
Prairie Sand-reed is a 2-6 ft. sod-forming, perennial grass with a stiffly erect culm and long, tapering leaves. The seed head is 4-16 in. long with narrow, ascending branches. Prairie sand-reed stays green until frost, then cures well to remain effective in the winter landscape.
From the Image Gallery
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial
Root Type: Fibrous
Leaf Arrangement: Alternate
Leaf Complexity: Simple
Leaf Venation: Parallel
Fruit Type: Caryopsis
Size Notes: Up to about 6 feet tall, occasionally to almost 8 feet.
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Yellow
Bloom Time: Jul , Aug
DistributionUSA: CO , IA , ID , IL , IN , KS , MI , MN , MO , MT , ND , NE , NM , NY , OH , PA , SD , WI , WY
Canada: AB , SK
Native Distribution: Ont. to s.e. B.C., s. to IN, IL, KS, CO & n. ID
Native Habitat: Sandy hills, prairies & open woods
Growing ConditionsWater Use: Medium
Light Requirement: Sun
CaCO3 Tolerance: High
Soil Description: Sandy, well-drained soils.
Conditions Comments: This is a good grass for erosion control in sandy blowout areas. Var. magna occurs on sand dunes of Ont. and the Great Lakes region. This variety is heavily pigmented purple. Var. longifolia occurs throughout the rest of the range. Both varieties are drought-tolerant.
PropagationCommercially Avail: yes
Find Seed or Plants
Find seed sources for this species at the Native Seed Network.
Mr. Smarty Plants says
Native plants of dune erosion control in Michigan
May 30, 2008
We care for Lake Michigan dune near our home in New Buffalo and would like to provide erosion control with native species that will also enhance the beauty of the dune with long lasting flowers. The ...
view the full question and answer
From the National Organizations DirectoryAccording to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:
Native Seed Network - Corvallis, OR
BibliographyBibref 946 - Gardening with Prairie Plants: How to Create Beautiful Native Landscapes (2002) Wasowski, Sally
Bibref 841 - Native Alternatives to Invasive Plants (2006) Burrell, C. C.
Search More Titles in Bibliography
Web ReferenceWebref 38 - Flora of North America (2019) Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.
Webref 23 - Southwest Environmental Information Network (2009) SEINet - Arizona Chapter
Additional resourcesUSDA: Find Calamovilfa longifolia in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Calamovilfa longifolia in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Calamovilfa longifolia
MetadataRecord Modified: 2022-12-02
Research By: TWC Staff