Tridens flavus is a grass native across the southeast. It is typically found in open, disturbed areas (like roadsides). It grows best in full sun to part shade, on dry to moist soils. This is a tall grass (it can grow up to five feet tall), and it produces purple seed heads in the fall that persist into winter- hence the common name Purpletop. Birds and small mammals enjoy eating the seeds. When planted in a group, the “purple top” effect is prominent. This is an important host plant for several native butterfly species. Tridens flavus is excellent for restoration projects, or for use as a specimen grass in a yard or rain garden.
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