Chasmanthium latifolium – Northern Sea Oats

Published on May 13, 2012 by Casey

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Chasmanthium latifolium
Chasmanthium latifolium

Drooping seed heads hang in clusters from slightly arching stems topping an upright clump of bamboo-like foliage. Green leaves turn copper in fall and the seed heads emerge green but turn purplish bronze by late summer then dry to a straw color. Clumping grasses like this provide nest sites and winter cover for quail and sparrows. They also provide fall and winter seeds for a number of birds including cardinals, towhees, juncos, sparrows and finches.

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Benefits

  • Grows well in full sun to partial shade
  • Provides nest sites, protective cover and food for birds
  • Use foliage and flower in fresh or dried arrangements
  • Good winter interest; very winter hardy
  • Deer resistant

Homeowner Growing and Maintenance Tips

  • Easy to grow in full sun to part shade. Tolerates shade.
  • Plant in dry to moist, well-drained soil. Surprisingly drought tolerant.
  • Will self-seed.
  • Leave foliage in place over winter for winter interest and to provide homes for over-wintering critters. This also helps protect crowns from the cold. Cut back to the ground in early spring before new growth begins

Native Range

Woods, thickets and bottomland; New Jersey to Illinois to Kansas south to Texas and Florida.

Native Trivia

Northern sea oats is one of the few native grasses that grows well in shade. You can plant it in the border, shade garden, naturalized areas, along streams or on the edge of a water garden. It also grows well in large containers.

Characteristics & Attributes

Plan Sub Group
• Low Grasses

Exposure
• Sun
• Filtered Shade

Soil
• Wide soil tolerance

Soil Moisture Preference
• Dry
• Average
• Moist
Attracts Wildlife
• Songbirds

Bloom Time
• Fall
• Late Summer

Critter Resistance
• Deer Resistant

Habitat Collection
• Songbird
• Dry Shade
Foliage Color
• Green

Uses
• Drought tolerant
• Cut or dried flower

Source: abnativeplants

NativeAmericanEncyclopedia.com Unabridged
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@ article {NativeAmericanEncyclopedia.com2014,
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}
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