Beargrass – Native Plant Spotlight

Beargrass (Xerophyllum tenax)

Beeargrass Native Plant SpotlightBeargrass (Xerophyllum tenax)

A unique and beautiful native plant, often used in floral arrangements, Beargrass (Xerophyllum tenax) can be an attractive and environmentally friendly addition to your outdoor space. It is a hardy perennial known for its gorgeous white flowers and pleasant fragrance.

It typically flowers in spring to early summer and grows anywhere and is roughly four to six feet tall. It is also known to be a particularly resilient and ecologically important plant, capable of surviving and regrowing after light to moderate fire. In the instance of fire damage, Beargrass beneficially contributes to preventing soil erosion and overall plant regeneration.

Forest Service Northern Region from Missoula, MTIn addition to having both beauty and brawn, Beargrass is a beloved delicacy to native wildlife. The plant was given the name “beargrass” because bears have found this species to be useful for a multitude of reasons. In the springtime, they have been spotted munching on the plant’s juicy base leaves, while in the winter they enjoy cozying up with the plant in their dens during hibernation.

A highly sought after plant in both the bear and human communities alike, with striking physical features and a tenacious nature

Unfortunately, Beargrass is not available in this year’s native plant sale. We got word from the grower that it did not germinate.

Chloe Steffes, 2023-2024 AmeriCorps Education Specialist


Sources:
US Forest Service – Bear-grass (Xerophyllum tenax)
Washington Native Plant Society – Beargrass

Photo Credits:
National Park Service PhotoPublic Domain
Forest Service Northern Region from Missoula, MT, USA, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

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