Red Lovegrass

Eragrostis secundiflora



Red Lovegrass is highly variable. Being red is not a reliable characteristic. It is a weedy, branching, spindly grass that is not similar to Plains, Weeping, or Sand Lovegrass. This tufted, erect bunchgrass can grow up to28 inches or 70 cm.  Sheaths are hairy at the throat, covering half the internode. Its blades can grow up to 20 cm by 2.5 mm.    The loosely contracted panicle reaches up to 30 cm long by 15 cm wide, is oblong and open, and appears green to dark purple changing to yellow at maturity. Its strongly compressed, green, light violet, blue-green, or reddish-brown spikelets bear ten to 25 overlapping florets and are borne nearly to the branch bases. Bloom time begins in April with seed production occurring from May to June given enough moisture. The seeds are on very short branches and quite a bit larger than in other Lovegrass species.  Red Lovegrass is a perennial, warm-season, native but provides poor grazing for wildlife and cattle. 


Red Lovegrass grows on the upland sandy soil of prairies and open woodlands. It can be a good grass for livestock grazing when managed as a pure stand. It invades overgrazed and disturbed areas as well as roadsides.