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BOUTELOUA gracilis 'Blonde Ambition'

Image of Bouteloua gracilis 'Blonde Ambition'

Plant Select®

Family

Poaceae

Botanical Name

BOUTELOUA gracilis 'Blonde Ambition'

Plant Common Name

Blonde Ambition Blue Grama Grass, Blue Grama Grass

Special Notice

This entry has yet to be reviewed and approved by L2G editors.

General Description

An exceptionally showy, heavy-flowering selection of blue grama grass, 'Blond Ambition' is a perennial warm-season grass grown for its one-sided, horizontal decorative flowers and blond, light yellow-tan seed heads. An upright, clumping plant larger than the wild grass species, it is native to the arid western United States and Mexico where soils are dry and alkaline. Cultivar 'Blonde Ambition' was discovered and introduced by David Salman of High Country Gardens in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Fine, narrow, light blue-green leaves emerge in spring. In summer slender stems rise above the foliage lined with one-sided flower buds that resemble mosquito larvae. The tiny flowers are chartreuse when they open and quite decorative lining the stem tips. In autumn the foliage turns burgundy before becoming tan and persisting across winter. Small birds eat the dry seeds through cold fall and winter months. The stiff stems pop up again after snows, adding much to the winter garden's visual interest.

Plant 'Blonde Ambition' in a full sun exposure with absolutely well-drained soil that's alkaline or neutral in pH. Cut back clumps in spring before new blades emerge. This is an ideal grass for meadow plantings or shortgrass prairie restorations but also looks good in rock gardens or mixed borders.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    9 - 5

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    3 - 9

  • Sunset Zone

    1a, 1b, 2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 14, 18, 19, 20, 21

  • Plant Type

    Grass

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun, Partial Sun

  • Height

    26"-36" / 66.0cm - 91.4cm

  • Width

    20"-20" / 50.8cm - 50.8cm

  • Bloom Time

    Summer, Late Summer

  • Native To

    North America, United States, Western United States, Southwestern United States, Mexico

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Neutral, Alkaline

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Clay, Loam, Sand

  • Tolerances

    Pollution, Drought

  • Growth Rate

    Fast

  • Water Requirements

    Xeric/Desert, Drought Tolerant

  • Habit

    Clump-Forming

  • Seasonal Interest

    Summer, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Showy

  • Flower Color

    Light Yellow, Chartreuse

  • Fruit Color

    Light Yellow, Tan

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Green, Blue Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Blue Green

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Purple, Blue Green, Tan

  • Fragrant Flowers

    No

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    Yes

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Foliage Texture

    Fine

  • Foliage Sheen

    Matte

  • Evergreen

    No

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Usage

    Dried Flower/Everlasting, Feature Plant, Mixed Border, Rock Garden / Wall, Wildflower

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Attracts

    Birds

  • Self-Sowing

    Yes