Kentucky Nature Preserves Rare Plants

Kentucky State Nature Preserves Commission

Northern Dropseed
Sporobolus heterolepis
Family: Poaceae

Protection Status:
State Status:  E
USFWS Status: {null}

Global Rank: G5
State Rank: S1

Dry open ground, prairies, glades and woodland openings near glades, rocky cliffs.

Species Description:
Perennial herb.

Flowering Period: Early August to late September.

Additional Information at NatureServe

Diagnostic Characteristics:
Species of Sporobolus have awnless ligules, flattened fruits and ciliate ligules (white tufts of hair at the end of the sheaths). This species can be distinguished from others in having an open loose inflorescence with the branches ascending/spreading. The leaf sheath is pubescent.

Woody plant invasion may need to be controlled using periodic prescribed fire, mowing or other means to maintain the open character of the habitat for this species. Hand removal of trees in the vicinity of the species is necessary. Soil disturbance resulting from activities such as ATV trails, timber removal or any activity that results in increased erosion and weed invasion will be detrimental. Exotic pest plants are a threat to this species and should be removed.

Global Range:
From Saskatchewan to Quebec south to Sonora, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Kentucky, and Georgia (Kartesz 1999).

Known Kentucky Occurrences:

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Data last updated: Wednesday, May 28, 2014
Kentucky State Nature Preserves Commission
801 Teton Trail
Frankfort,KY 40601
Phone: (502) 573-2886
Fax: (502) 573-2355
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