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River Oats

River oats

River Oats
(Chasmanthium latifolium)


  • Currently available


  • 2 to 4 feet


  • July – October


  • Native
  • Grass


  • Part shade to Shade

Soil moisture:

  • Medium to Moist

Used by:

  • Caterpillars (foliage)
  • Songbirds (seeds)


  • River oats is what’s called a bunch grass which means it forms clumps instead of a solid mat like the turf grass in your yard.
  • The foliage is blue-green in early spring and golden brown in fall and winter.
  • Ripe seed heads are tan to golden brown, hang on into winter, and provide visual interest.
  • Works well in containers if kept well-watered.
  • Seed heads can be used in dried flower arrangements.
  • Self-seeds readily and can become aggressive in preferred conditions.
  • Deer resistant

Native Range:

USDA Range Map for river oats
Map credit: USDA Plants Database

Relevant Backyard Ecology Resources: