Description: Member of the grass family.Each grass flower is made up of a pair of tiny bracts and the stamens and pistil. It is native to the U.S. state of California, where it occurs throughout the coastal hills, valleys, and mountain ranges, as well as the Sacramento Valley and parts of the Sierra Nevada foothills, and Baja California. Popular in native grass mixtures and in wildflower mixtures. This species has the same dominant characteristic as most grassland plants: it is able to withstand long periods of drought. Nassella pulchra is California’s state grass. Some grass species in these habitats include red oat grass (Themeda triandra) and Rhodes grass (Chloris gayana) in tropical savannas, and purple needlegrass (Nassella pulchra) and galleta in temperate areas. Purple Needlegrass (Nassella pulchra) Purple needlegrass is a perennial bunchgrass which can live up to 150 years. California grasslands were probably historically dominated by perennial bunchgrasses such as purple needlegrass (Nassella pulchra) and bottlebrush squirreltail (Elymus elymoides) [22,55,204,211,251]. Common Name: Purple Needlegrass Botanical Name(s): Stipa pulchra (Nassella pulchra) Purple NeedlegrassNamed "California State Grass" because of its wide range of adapation in climates and soils. Discussion. Common name: Purple Needlegrass. Distribution Purple needlegrass occurs on the west side of the Coast Ranges from northern Baja California north to the Oregon border. Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center focused on protecting and preserving North America's native plants through native plant lists and image galleries, conservation, education, natural landscapes, seed collection - Millennium Seed Bank (MSB) Project, preserving and restoring native communities, spreading awareness on invasive species and gardening to attract wildlife. It is believed that before European settlement, purple needlegrass was the dominant bunch grass species in the state. Purple needlegrass can be found in temperate grasslands from the Oregon border into northern Baja California. Also can be p Scientifically known as Nassella pulchra, purple needlegrass is native to the coastal hills of California, ranging from the Oregon border south to Baja, California. It resembles N. manicata, but has longer florets and less strongly developed crowns. It probably never formed extensive grasslands (Hamilton 1997), flourishing primarily in moderately disturbed areas. The species also occurs in the Central Valley and foothills of the Cascade Range and Sierra Nevada, and on the Channel Islands. This grass is normally found on dry slopes at around 5000 feet. Nassella pulchra, basionym Stipa pulchra, is a species of grass known by the common name purple needlegrass. For It is the most widespread native bunchgrass and its growing range is from the Oregon border into northern Baja California. It is native to California, where it occurs throughout the coastal hills, valleys, and mountain ranges, as well as the Sacramento Valley and parts of the Sierra Nevada foothills, and Baja California. Nassella pulchra grows in oak chaparral and grassland communities of the coast ranges and Sierra foothills of California, extending south into Mexico. But the individual grasses are still here, and in recognition of their historical and environ- mental importance, the Cali- fornia legislature in 2004 declared that the most domi- nant native grass, purple needlegrass (Stipa pulchra, formerly known as Nassella pulchra), as the official state grass. Purple needlegrass is a medium-large, long-lived bunchgrass well adapted to clay soils. It cannot be used as a lawn grass because of its clustered nature, but it can be used as decorative grass. 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