Little bluestem (Schizachyrium scoparium) is such a beautiful grass. Its namesake blue color never fails to turns heads and its fall color—changing from blue-green to orange to burgundy—is just stunning.
I have always enjoyed looking closely at plants for the amazing, but often overlooked, details. Look closely at this little bluestem inflorescence/infructescence and I'm sure you won't be disapponted. The infructescence is very feathery, covered with fluffy white hairs. So amazing!
Little bluestem is a very wide-ranging native grass, naturally occurring in all but three of the lower 48 states. It is one of the "big four" grasses of the Midwest tallgrass prairie along with big bluestem (Andropogon gerardii), indian grass (Sorghastrum nutans), and switchgrass (Panicum virgatum).
Pollinator gardens are all the rage right now, and are definitely important, but don't forget about using plants that are equally as important to native insects, birds, and mammals for shelter and food.
Grasses (and sedges) are extremely important host plants for many insects and provide food for loads of birds and mammals. For example, little bluestem is a larval host plant for several skippers and butterflies, including the Ottoe skipper, cobweb skipper, Leonard's skipper, indian skipper, dusted skipper, and swarthy skipper.