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Products > Piptochaetium fimbriatum
Piptochaetium fimbriatum - Pinyon Ricegrass

Note: This plant is not currently for sale. This is an archive page preserved for informational use.  
Image of Piptochaetium fimbriatum
[2nd Image]
Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Grass
Family: Poaceae (Gramineae) (Grasses)
Origin: Southwest (U.S.) (North America)
Bloomtime: Summer
Synonyms: [Stipa fimbriata, P. fimbriatum var. confine]
Height: 1-2 feet
Width: 1-2 feet
Exposure: Cool Sun/Light Shade
Summer Dry: Yes
Irrigation (H2O Info): Low Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 10-15 F
Piptochaetium fimbriatum (Pinyon Ricegrass) - A very attractive perennial small clumping warm-season grass that grows with foliage to 1 to 2 feet tall with a 5-8 inch long loose panicle of long awned flowers rising above the foliage in summer. We are not aware of this plant being used in California landscapes but suggest trying this plant in dry shade gardens, though in our coastal California gardens it will likely tolerate full sun. Water sparingly if at all. Hardiness not known but likely to at least 10F. This plant is an understory component in oak and pinyon woods of the southwestern United States from southern Arizona to western Texas and southward into Mexico. It is a very attractive grass and is palatable for grazing deer and is used as nesting material by quail. Piptochaetium is primarily a South American genus with 27 species of which 4 are native to areas within the US. The elongated awn species such as P. fimbriatum were previously included with the genus Stipa. The name Piptochaetium comes from the Greek 'pipto' meaning "fall" and 'chaite' meaning "long hair", likely in reference to the old leaves at the base of the plant that are long, spreading, and curly. Our plants from seed we collected in 2008 on private property in the San Rafael Valley while on a "prairie dog" adventure with John Greenlee (AKA , The Grassman), Neal Debold (AKA Prairie Neal) and Arizona's own Scott Calhoun of Zona Gardens. This beautiful little grass, at first unidentified, was christened "Pseudostipa bitchenensis". 

This information about Piptochaetium fimbriatum displayed is based on research conducted in our horticultural library and from reliable online resources. We also will relate observations made about it as it grows in our nursery gardens and other gardens we have visited, as well how the crops have performed in containers in our nursery field. We will also incorporate comments that we receive from others and we welcome hearing from anyone with additional information, particularly if they can share any cultural information that would aid others in growing it.