Purple Three-Awn

Aristida purpurea

Aristida purpurea, Purple Three-Awh, © Mike Plagens

Bear Tank, Superior, Pinal Co., Arizona. 12 March 2017. (An area proposed to be obliterated by an overburden of mine tailings.)

GRASS: A perennial grass forming into upright to nearly rounded clumps from about ½ m tall.

LEAVES: Blades narrow, less than 2 mm wide and up to 25 cm long.

RANGE: Common in the Mojave, Sonoran and Chihuahuan Deserts especially along roadsides and on rocky slopes. Frequently cultivated in xeriscape gardens of Phoenix and Tucson.

FLOWERS: The inflorescence may show and abundance of purple-maroon awns (three per spikelet) making this one of the very attractive native grasses.


Family: Poaceae

Sponsored Links:

More Information:

Sonoran Desert Field Guide
Sonoran Desert Places
Sonoran Desert Naturalist Home Page


Copyright Michael J. Plagens, page created 8 Aug. 2008,
updated 31 Aug. 2018.