Tumble Windmillgrass

Chloris verticillata



This bunchgrass grows in small tufts and has erect or prostrate, flat stems that are usually branched and crowded at the base with leaves. It is rather short, up to 18 inches or 45 cm, with short stolons that can form a mat of turf. Its presence may be a sign of overgrazing.  Leaf blades are up to 15 cm by 3 mm, light green, rough, and usually folded. The basal leaves are long and the upper leaves short.  The purplish seed head has ten to 16 seed branches that are 5 to 15 cm long arising from nodes regularly spaced along the axis. The branches comprise of one to five well-separated (>5 mm apart) whorls.  The tawny, wide-spaced spikelets alternate along these branches and have short awns. Flowering occurs from May to September, and the seeds produced do not appear inflated as they do in C. cucullata. Tumble Windmillgrass is a perennial, warm-season, native grass.  Poor grazing for livestock and wildlife, but all livestock graze it in spring and early summer. 


This species is adapted to grow on any soil type. It occurs in heavy, sandy, or gravelly soils of disturbed areas, roadsides, lawns, and parks. It is not common on native rangelands.