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 Weather Station

Products > Muhlenbergia lindheimeri
Muhlenbergia lindheimeri - Lindheimer's Muhly

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Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Grass
Family: Poaceae (Gramineae) (Grasses)
Origin: Southwest (U.S.) (North America)
Flower Color: Light Gray
Bloomtime: Fall/Winter
Height: 3-5 feet
Width: 3-4 feet
Exposure: Sun or Shade
Seaside: Yes
Summer Dry: Yes
Irrigation (H2O Info): Low Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: <15 F
Muhlenbergia lindheimeri (Lindheimer's Muhly) - Native to Mexico and Texas, this stunning clump-forming grass is winter dormant in cold climates, but usually semi-deciduous in mild climates. From the fall into winter emerge the 5 to 6 foot tall upright flower inflorescences, rising well above the 4 foot tall clumps of blue-gray foliage. The flowers are at first purple then mature to a gray color. Best in full sun with regular watering but will tolerate drought and light shade. Tolerant of many different types of soil. Reportedly tolerant of ocean spray and saline soils. Is attractive if left unmanaged but can also be cut back to 1 foot tall or raked hard in spring to remove old leaves and flowers. This is one of our favorite grasses and can be seen planted throughout our gardens. Though a little smaller in scale, it is a great replacement for the invasive species of pampas grass (Cortaderia). Expect a few seedlings to emerge in irrigated locations in the garden but certainly not weedy. This grass is native to the Edwards Plateau region of central Texas. The German naturalist Johann Christian Daniel von Schreber (1739-1810) named the genus for Gotthilf Heinrich (Henry) Ernst Muhlenberg (1753-1815) who was American born but returned to his ancestral Germany for schooling and later returned to America. He was an ordained Lutheran minister but devoted his free time to the study of the botany. The specific epithet was named to honor Ferdinand Jakob Lindheimer (1801 - 1879), a German-born explorer who spent his working life on the American frontier and settled in the New Braunfels area (near San Antonio) in the mid-1850s. Other common names for this grass include Big Muhly Grass and Blue Muhly Grass.  The information on this page is based on our research that has been conducted on this plant in our nursery library, from online sources, and from observations made of the crops growing in the nursery, plants in the nursery's garden and those in other gardens where we have observed it. We also have incorporated comments received from others and welcome getting feedback from those who may have additional information, particularly if this information includes cultural information that would aid others in growing Muhlenbergia lindheimeri.