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Native Plant Society of Texas

Eastern Gamagrass

Tripsacum dactyloides

Other common name(s):

Fakahatchee Grass

Family:

Poaceae (Grass Family)

Plant Ecoregion Distribution Map

Chihuahuan Deserts, East Central Texas Plains, Edwards Plateau, Gulf Coast Prairies and Marshes, Southwestern Tablelands, Texas Blackland Prairies, Western Gulf Coastal Plain

Plant Characteristics

Growth Form

Grass & Sedge

Height

1
to
3
ft.

Spread

1
to
2
ft.

Leaf Retention

Evergreen

Lifespan

Perennial

Habitat and Care Requirements

Soil Type(s)

Sand, Loam, Clay, Acid, Calcareous, Poor Drainage, Moist

Light Requirement

Part Shade

Water Requirement

High

Native Habitat

Woodland, Wetland or Riparian

Bloom and Attraction

Bloom Color

Brown

Bloom Season

Spring, Summer

Seasonal Interest

Seeds, Nectar, Larval Host

Wildlife Benefit

Butterflies, Birds, Deer

Maintenance

Leave dead stems standing through Fall and Winter for insect habitat. Cut back dead stems in February before Spring growth.

Comments

Very dense clumps. Rich dark green. Long-lived; doesn’t like to be moved. Sharp leaf blades. Grows large and stately. It is a good idea to allocate plenty of room to it. Deer eat hard, yellow seeds. In the wild it prefers most portions of tallgrass prairies of East Texas, but is found in most vegetation areas of Texas.. Larval Host: Bunchgrass Skipper
Previous Scientific Name(s): Synonym/s: Coix dactyloides, Tripsacum dactyloides var. occidentale

References

1) Griffith, Bryce, Omernick & Rodgers (2007). Ecoregions of Texas. 2) https://www.wildflower.org/plants/result.php?id_plant=TRDA3. 3) https://portal.torcherbaria.org/portal/taxa/index.php?taxon=Tripsacum+dactyloides&formsubmit=Search+Terms. 4) http://bonap.net/TDC/Image/Map?taxonType=Species&taxonId=19125&locationType=County&mapType=Normal, 5) https://www.itis.gov/servlet/SingleRpt/SingleRpt?search_topic=TSN&search_value=41287#null, 6) Hatch, Umphres, Ardoin, 2015, Field Guide To Common Texas Grasses, pg. 286