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Big Bluestem

Missouri State Grass

Stems of big bluestem prairie grass (Adropogon gerardii); photo by Dendroica cerulea on Flickr (use permitted with attribution).

Big Bluestem

Missouri designated big bluestem (Andropogon gerardii) as the official state grass in 2007, the result of efforts made by fourth-graders at Truman Elementary School in Rolla, MO. Big bluestem grass is native to Missouri and occurs throughout the state except for a few southeastern counties.

Big bluestem is a major component of Missouri's tallgrass prairies. The name bluestem is for the bluish-green color of the leaves and stems, which turn a reddish-copper color in autumn.