Stout Blue-eyed Grass (Sisyrinchium angustifolium)


JBtheExplorer

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Stout Blue-eyed Grass, also called Narrowleaf Blue-eyed Grass, is native to most of the eastern half of the United States.
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Stout Blue-eyed Grass is one of my favorite species, and definitely in my top 5.
While the name implies that it's grass, it's not. It's actually a tiny member of the Iris family.

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It's one of the smallest plants I grow, but also one of the brightest. It stands out from a distance and can bloom quite heavily after a couple years. The plant gets to be around 8" tall, but can grow as tall as 12". The flowers are only about an inch in diameter.

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It blooms in May and June, but will occasionally bloom into July. I've even seen it produce a few flowers in August and September.
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It grows best in full sun or partly sunny situations. It can handle dry or average soil, and seems to handle drought conditions once it's well established. Well-drained soil appears to be a must, though.
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It mostly benefits tiny bees and flies. I've seen a lot of activity on these flowers on warm spring days. Some birds and mammals also eat the small seeds it produces.
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I've been trying to establish a large population of this plant, and using it like a ground cover, both in my native garden, as well as along the outside edge of my pond. I'm trying to fill in every gap with it. I want it everywhere. It's a rare plant in my state, so having an established population of it is pretty cool.
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It can be divided every few years, and it's also easy to grow from seed. I've both grown it indoors as well as spread seed outdoors and it grows very well either way. It produces a lot of seeds. I highly recommend it if you live within its native range. If you don't live in it's range and you live in the U.S., you do live in the range of at least one of the many other species of Blue-eyed Grass.

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alp

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Stunning photos! I wish I had more land .. I have already googled the Prairie??? and the seeds are under £2 from China of all places.

Keep up with the good work whilst we feast our eyes on your fantastic photos! Thank you for sharing..
 
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JBtheExplorer

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Stunning photos! I wish I had more land .. I have already googled the Prairie??? and the seeds are under £2 from China of all places.
I wouldn't recommend it for anyone outside of its native range. That ultimately leads to problems, like habitat destruction.
 

alp

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I wouldn't recommend it for anyone outside of its native range. That ultimately leads to problems, like habitat destruction.
Thank heavens that I haven't placed the order. I think I'm going to buy a Cornus controversa variegata instead!
 

JBtheExplorer

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Thank heavens that I haven't placed the order. I think I'm going to buy a Cornus controversa variegata instead!
Lol. I'm confused. Isn't that also non-native to your area? :confused: That would be the same as planting Blue-eyed Grass.
 

alp

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I grow things that take my fancy. Most of the plants were lifted from China or some other countries. So, can't be that fussy. Camellias from China, even clematis...
 
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JBtheExplorer

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I grow things that take my fancy. Most of the plants were lifted from China or some other countries. So, can't be that fussy. Camellias from China, even clematis...
I understand that you and most people (sadly) grow non-natives, it was just funny that you responded that you're glad you didn't place the order but instead was going to get something equally non-native. :ROFLMAO:
 
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JBtheExplorer

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JB, what does the dark green mean? My county is dark green and the adjacent county is light green.
Dark green means it's native to your state but not documented in your county. Bright green means it exists in your county. If you live near bright green, you're still close enough to the native range to where it would be beneficial to plant it.
 

alp

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I understand that you and most people (sadly) grow non-natives, it was just funny that you responded that you're glad you didn't place the order but instead was going to get something equally non-native. :ROFLMAO:
I've found that plant very intriguing, but as I wanted to move, I don't want to buy seeds as they will lose their viability over time. I will buy it once I know where I will be downsizing to.

To tell you the truth, UK is like a small island and plants are mostly from China, and even snowdrops or tulips are from somewhere else. Things are so hybridised that they look so different these days. I know I'm confusing. If I like something, I will try and try and try .. but don't ask me about meconopsis as I will burst into tears!:cry:
 

alp

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They never get to a decent size. And even when I bought them as seedlings, some critters had them for dinner. I have bought about 10 packets plus of seeds!:cry::cry::cry::cry:
 

JBtheExplorer

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They never get to a decent size. And even when I bought them as seedlings, some critters had them for dinner. I have bought about 10 packets plus of seeds!:cry::cry::cry::cry:
I've had similar struggles with Purple Prairie Clover. The rabbits love them. I should have a large established population of them by now. Instead, I have two small plants.
 
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alp

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You're lucky in the sense that you know your nemesis! All I know is some critter! LOL!
 

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