King Ranch Bluestem

Bothriochloa ischaemum

 

 

Description: King Ranch Bluestem is a perennial with foliage from 30-80 cm.  This grass has largely basal leaf blades and brown-purple nodes.  The most distinctive feature of this grass is the papilla-based hairs on the blade where the sheath and blade meet.

 

Ecological Threat: This grass has been extensively planted by ranchers and highway departments, posing a widespread threat.

 

Biology & Spread: King Ranch Bluestem is intentionally spread for cattle and as a means for erosion control alongside roadways. This grass reproduces by seed.

 

Threat in Oklahoma: Due to the abundance of ranches and cattle in Oklahoma this grass has been intentionally brought in and grown throughout Oklahoma. However, this plant is invasive and outcompetes local grasses that are more palatable and nutritious for cattle.

Management: Weed Control on Rangelands