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Plant Profile  

Common Name: Eastern Gamagrass

Species Name: Tripsacum dactyloides

Plant Type: Grasses & Grass-like

Family Name: Poaceae, Grass Family

Tribe: Andropogoneae, Bluestem Tribe




Plant Facts  
Origin Native
Duration Perennial
Season Warm
Distribution in the U.S. Southern half from the East Coast to Iowa and Nebraska and southwestward into central Mexico
Distribution in Oklahoma Throughout the state



ID Characteristics

  • Field Identification Characteristics


    • Grows in large bunches, often near water
    • Large, thick stems
    • Knotty vertical rhizomes
    • Leaves broad (0.5-1.5 inches wide); mostly basal; with rough leaf edges
    • Leaves with prominent white midvein


    • 1-4 branches at tip of stem
    • Hard cylindrical, persistent, female spikelets below; male spikelets above (2 per node)
  • Leaf and Stem Characteristics
    • Plant Height: 200-300 centimeters
    • Ligule Type: Ciliate or ciliate membranous
    • Sheath: Glabrous
    • Leaves: Basal and cauline
  • Floral Characteristics
    • Inflorescence Type: Rame
    • Florets Per Spikelet: 2
    • Glumes: Equal (upper spikelets); hardened (lower spikelets)



Soil Type Moist sand, loam and clay
Habitat Moist but well-drained soils or prairies, ditches and stream banks
Successional Stage Late



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